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The Van Wert County Courthouse

Friday, Jun. 24, 2016

Obituaries can be emailed to editor@thevwindependent.com or faxed to 419.238.2578. Full obituaries cost $30 (including a photo), while unpaid death notices do not include memberships, work data and other personal information. The names of grandchildren, etc., are also not included in a death notice. Obituary payments can be sent to: Van Wert Independent, P.O. Box 487, Van Wert, OH 45891. Local funeral homes are billed for full obituaries, while out-of-town funeral homes can also be billed, if so requested.

POSTED: 12/28/10 at 3:42 pm. FILED UNDER: Info

Marjorie L. Bolinger, 96, a former resident of Van Wert, passed away at 3:30 a.m. Thursday, June 23, 2016, at Willow Brook Christian Home in Columbus.

She was born June 13, 1920, in Decatur, Indiana, the daughter of Charles and Dora (McClish) Massonne, who both preceded her in death. On August 10, 1941, she married Kenneth Bolinger, who died February 4, 2009.

She is survived by her three children, Jean Hoar of Portland, Oregon, William R. (Bobbie) Bolinger of Galena, and James E. (Karen) Bolinger of Clarion, Pennsylvania; nine grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren.

Two brothers and two sisters also preceded her in death.

Marjorie was a member of First United Methodist Church in Van Wert and was a homemaker.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Monday, June 27, at Brickner Funeral Home in Van Wert, with the Revs. Gus Cristo-Baker and Paul W. Miller officiating. Burial will follow in Woodland Cemetery in Van Wert.

Visitation is from 9 a.m. until the time of services Monday at the funeral home.

Preferred memorials: First United Methodist Church.

Condolences may be expressed at www.bricknerfuneralhome.com or emailed to bricknerfuneralhome@bright.net.

POSTED: 06/24/16 at 4:58 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Betty L. Hayes, 91, of Rockford, passed away at 4:51 a.m. Thursday, June 23, 2016, at the Laurels of Shane Hill in Rockford, where she was a patient.

She was born August 1, 1924, in Miami County, near Piqua, the daughter of Charles and Ella (Stickle) Karnehm, who both preceded her in death. On September 8, 1948, she married Forrest E. “Bud” Hayes, who died June 5, 2011.

Survivors include three children, Craig (Heidi) Hayes of Phoenix, Arizona, and Deb (Steve) Knapke, and Curtis “Pete” (Twyla) Hayes, both of Rockford; 11 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and a sister-in-law, Margaret (Jerry) Hayes of Celina.

Three brothers, Alvin, Foster, and Howard Karnehm; and five sisters, Esther Leffel, Bertha McGraw, Laura Witherhead, Dorothy Burnside, and Florence Richie, also preceded her in death.

Funeral services will be conducted at 11 a.m. Monday, June 27, at Olive Branch Church of God in Rockford, with Pastor Steve Waterman officiating. Burial will follow in Mount Olive Cemetery near Rockford.

Visitation is from 4-7 p.m. Sunday, June 26, at Ketcham-Ripley Funeral Home in Rockford, and an hour prior to services Monday at the church.

Preferred memorials: To the church.

Condolences may be expressed at http://ketchamripley.com.

POSTED: 06/23/16 at 9:45 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Joan L. (Sowers) Gunsett of Convoy passed away Monday morning, June 20, 2016, at her residence.

Joan (Sowers) Gunsett

Joan L. (Sowers) Gunsett

She was born August 3, 1924, the daughter of Homer and Beulah (Harper) Sowers, who both preceded her in death. On July 21, 1946, she married John Gunsett, who died February 25, 1997.

Survivors include two sons, Gary Gunsett of Convoy and Craig Gunsett of Van Wert; a daughter-in-law, Susan Gunsett of Convoy; one brother, Denny (Betty) Sowers of Columbia City, Indiana; a sister, Betty Love of Monroeville, Indiana; and three grandchildren, Kelly (Chad) Marks, Lindsay (Jon) Kreischer, and Josh (Valerie) Gunsett.

A son, Jack Gunsett; four brothers, George, Don, Jack, and James Sowers; one sister Judy Nowak; and one grandson, Derek Gunsett, also preceded her in death.

Joan retired from the Continental Can Company in Van Wert after 42 years of service. She was a member of Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Convoy, and a graduate of Convoy High School.

Funeral services will be conducted at noon Thursday, June 23, at Gearhart-Jurczyk Funeral Home in Convoy. Burial will be in IOOF Cemetery in Convoy.

Visitation is from 10 a.m.-noon Thursday at the funeral home.

Preferred memorials: Convoy EMS squad or Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Condolences may be expressed at www.alspachgearhart.com.

POSTED: 06/21/16 at 6:53 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Joanne M. LaRue, 86, of McComb, passed away at 11 p.m. Sunday, June 19, 2016, at Bridge Hospice Care Center in Findlay.

She was born January 10, 1930, in Spencerville, the daughter of John and Geneva Dunn (later married to C.W. “Wes” Swaim), who both preceded her in death. On February 3, 1951, she married Paul E. LaRue, who died in January 2015.

Survivors include three daughters, Kay of Delaware (Ohio), Karen of Willard, and Paula of Van Wert; a daughter-in-law, Rebecca of Richwood; one granddaughter, Katherene (Rick) LaRue-Martin of Springboro; and a sister-in-law, Phyllis LaRue of Deshler.

A son, Steven, also preceded her in death.

Mrs. LaRue was a 1948 graduate of McComb High School and earned a degree in music education from Bowling Green State University in 1953. She was a member of Delta Zeta sorority. Following graduation, she went to Oklahoma with Paul while he served as an instructor at Fort Sill. It was there she started to give piano lessons, and over the next 63 years, gave lessons to countless piano, organ, and voice students.

Early in her career, she also taught music at Belmore School and in McComb Schools. Joanne was a longtime member and officer of the Findlay Area Music Teachers Association, and, for more than 20 years, chaired the Findlay Area OMTA Ribbon Festival each March. She also served as OMTA Northwest District president.

Joanne was a member of Oakdale United Methodist Church and for many years played the organ there, as well as for many area weddings and funerals. She was also a member of the McComb Progress Club.

Funeral services will be conducted at 11 a.m. Thursday, June 23, at Hartley-Lehtomaa Funeral Home in McComb. Burial will be in McComb Union Cemetery.

Visitation is from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, June 22, at the funeral home.

Preferred memorials: Oakdale United Methodist Church or McComb Schools Fine Arts Boosters.

Condolences may be expressed at www.lehtomaafh.com.

POSTED: 06/20/16 at 4:20 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Rosemary F. Kramer, 93, of Delphos, passed away Monday, June 20, 2016, at The Meadows of Kalida.

She was born September 19, 1922, in Ottoville, the daughter of Gebhard and Mayme (Bohn) Gasser, who both preceded her in death. On April 10, 1948, she married Ralph W. Kramer, who died October 16, 1982.

Survivors include three daughters, Marilyn (Ron) Hoffman and Janet (Tom) Dunlap, both of Columbus Grove, and JoAnn (Roger) Schroeder of Glandorf; a daughter-in-law, Lora Kramer of Delphos; one brother, Gebhard (Ruth) Gasser of Ottoville; 11 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

Two sons, John B. Kramer and James Kramer; a brother, Rudy Gasser; and two sisters, Wilma Gasser and Alma Beckman, also preceded her in death.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Thursday, June 23, at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Delphos, with Father George Mahas officiating. Burial will follow in St. John’s Cemetery in Delphos.

Visitation is from 2-8 p.m. Wednesday, June 22, at Harter and Schier Funeral Home in Delphos, where a Catholic Ladies of Columbia memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. and a parish wake at 7:30 that evening.

Preferred memorials: St. John’s Parish Foundation.

Condolences may be expressed at www.harterandschier.com.

POSTED: 06/20/16 at 4:10 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Troy Jones Jr., 67, of Mendon, died at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June 18, 2016, at the Van Wert Area Inpatient Hospice Center.

He was born March 29, 1949, in Jellico, Tennessee, the son of Troy and Ruby (Fuson) Jones Sr., who both preceded him in death. On September 23, 1968, he married Sharon Unger, who survives in Mendon.

Other survivors include two sons and a daughter, Troy Ray Jones of King Salmon, Alaska, Keith Jones of Palmer, Alaska, and Beverly (Alex) Rowen of Rockford; six grandchildren; a brother, Kenneth (Vicky) Jones of Mendon; and a sister, Billie Jo (Bill) Heindel of Mendon.

A daughter, Amanda Jones, also preceded him in death.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, June 22, at Samaria Missionary Baptist Church in St. Marys, with Pastor Jack Burns officiating. Burial will follow in Riverside Cemetery in Rockford.

Visitation is from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, June 21, at Ketcham-Ripley Funeral Home in Rockford.

Preferred memorials: Community Health Professionals-Van Wert Area Inpatient Hospice Center or Fox Family Ride for Autism.

Condolences may be expressed at http://ketchamripley.com.

POSTED: 06/20/16 at 6:20 am. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Vernon Eugene Etzler, 73, of Middle Point, passed away at 12:56 p.m. Thursday, June 16, 2016, at St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima.

He was born July 23, 1942, in Van Wert County, the son of Wilber and Mary (Knittle) Etzler, who both preceded him in death. On October 30, 1990, he married Barbara K. (Wilson) Hoghe-Etzler, who survives.

Other survivors include a sister, Bonnie (Dave) Evans of Middle Point; one brother, John (Pat) Etzler of Middle Point; three stepdaughters, Tracy (Mark) Bishop of Convoy, and Tina Eley and Tonya Hoghe, both of Middle Point; three stepgrandchildren; six stepgreat-grandchildren; three nieces; two great-nieces; and one great-nephew.

A stepson, Troy Hoghe, also preceded him in death.

Funeral services will be conducted at 10 a.m. Monday, June 20, at Alspach-Gearhart Funeral Home & Crematory in Van Wert, with the Rev. Al Joseph officiating. Burial will follow in Ridge Cemetery in rural Van Wert County.

Visitation is from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Sunday, June 19, at the funeral home.

Preferred memorials: Middle Point Fire Department or Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Van Wert.

POSTED: 06/17/16 at 7:15 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Marjorie M. Pifer, 92, of St. Marys, passed away at 7:10 a.m. Friday, June 17, 2016.

She was born in Chattanooga, the daughter of LeRoy and Bertha (Leinninger) Pifer, who both preceded her in death.

Survivors include a sister, Verna Behm of Celina; one brother-in-law, Dr. A.B. Dudley of Columbus, Georgia; four nieces; one nephew; and several great-nieces and nephews.

Graveside funeral services will be conducted at 4:30 p.m. Monday, June 20, at Riverside Cemetery in Rockford, with the Rev. Tom Brunstrup officiating.

Visitation is from 1-2:30 p.m. Monday in the Meyers Community Room on the Campus of Otterbein Senior Lifestyle Choices in St. Marys, with a closing meditation given by Bill McOmber at 2:30 that afternoon.

Preferred memorials: Partners Activities Committee of Otterbein.

Condolences may be expressed at http://ketchamripley.com.

POSTED: 06/17/16 at 7:14 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Ronald Brent Miller, 77, of Van Wert, passed away at 8:50 p.m. Sunday, June 12, 2016, at the Van Wert Area Inpatient Hospice Center.

Ronald Brent Miller

Ronald Brent Miller

He was born July 18, 1938, in Van Wert, the son of Clifford E. and Pansy (Powell) Miller, who both preceded him in death. He married Shirley L. (Ackom) Miller, who died October 8, 2013.

Mr. Miller was retired from Aeroquip Corporation in Van Wert and was a member of First United Methodist Church in Van Wert. He was a member and past exalted ruler of Elks Lodge 1197 in Van Wert.

Ron loved going to the “shop” and having coffee with the guys, stopping by American Legion Post 178 on Mondays and Thursdays, hanging out with the gang on Wednesdays at the Elks, and coffee with the guys at McDonald’s on Saturday mornings. But most of all, he loved time with his children and grandchildren.

Survivors include three children, Kimberly A. (Dave) Clifton of Heber City, Utah, Roderick E. (Dawna L.) Miller of Decatur, Indiana, and Troy A. (Tina) Miller of Van Wert; a brother, Ernie (Carolyn) Miller of Van Wert; nine grandchildren, Carly (Jamey) Driscoll, Kacy Clifton, Dani Ulman, Brittany and Kristi Lambright, AJ (Courtney) Miller, Rachel Miller, Cassity (Zach) Welker, and LeAndryce Miller; and eight great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be conducted at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 18, at Alspach-Gearhart Funeral Home & Crematory in Van Wert. Burial will be in Woodland Cemetery in Van Wert.

Visitation is from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Friday at the funeral home, where an Elks memorial service will be held at 7:30 p.m.

Preferred memorials: Van Wert Area Inpatient Hospice Center, c/o Community Health Professionals, 1159 Westwood Drive, Van Wert, OH 45891.

Condolences may be expressed at www.alspachgearhart.com.

POSTED: 06/14/16 at 2:08 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries

Visitation and a Celebration of Life service have been scheduled for Barbara J. Miller Whitley, who passed away May 25, 2016, at the University of Michigan Medical Center.

Visitation will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 25, at Wesley United Methodist Church, 551 Center St. in Van Wert, followed by a Celebration of Life service at noon, with the Rev. Dr. See young Lee officiating.

POSTED: 06/09/16 at 11:46 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries