Memories of dear sister will live on


By Kay Conklin - Contributing columnist



Her name was Ann. It was really “Edith Ann” when she was born on Jan. 14 in 1942. Our new little sister was blond and very pretty. Her name of Edith was added on because Edith was the name of our mom’s mother. And it was the day of her mother’s funeral, and our mom wasn’t able to go.

One of my first memories of her is when she was about 5 years old and had swallowed a nickel. She said she did, and Mom believed her, so they spent a lot of time checking to see if she passed it, and finally it was recovered. That nickel has been talked about a lot over all the years since. We often wonder where it is today.

She was always noticed as different from the rest of her six siblings because she was a blond. The only blond in the house. No curls, but braids mostly. She was a very pretty girl. However, it wasn’t too many years ago when she told me what had happened when she was in the first grade. The other girls in her class voted as to who they wanted in their group. When she told me that she had been voted out of the group, I knew it had affected her greatly. Whatever the cause, it had hurt her feelings so much that she was in her 60s before she told me about it.

When she got to high school, she was a cheerleader and also the homecoming queen. She also had the lead in many of the plays. One was when she was “Mama” in “I Remember Mama” in a Delaware theater group. She had the lead in a couple of musicals in high school and sang very well.

Later in life, after her marriage and the birth of two daughters, she and her husband had a house built in Delaware. It was a very nice house, with a basement for having lots of parties. We have pictures when we were all down there for a big Thanksgiving dinner. She liked to talk about dancing on a table, but I never did see her do it.

Eventually, she got a job in the registrar’s office at Ohio Wesleyan University and worked there until she retired. While there, she talked me into applying for a job in the education department. I was very glad to get hired and, thanks to her, I had the opportunity to take classes.

While both of us worked those years at OWU, we met for lunch every day at the Brown Jug. When our sister, Jean, came to work at OWU, she joined us for lunch, too. Then other staff from OWU started joining us. That’s when the owners told us that if we were going to eat there every day, they would give us our own big table in the back. Lots of good memories

for all of us from those days. Especially every time Ed Wolf sang “Happy Birthday” to one of the group.

During that time, Ann’s marriage came to an end, and there was a divorce. That’s when Ann bought her own smaller house up on Pennsylvania Avenue. Her two daughters went on to graduate from OWU because Ann had worked there long enough for them to get to go tuition free.

Eventually, Ann’s health began to fail, and she had to retire. After too many surgeries, she had to give up her home and move to St. Michael’s. That was followed by having to move to the Sarah Moore nursing home. And as her health continued to get worse, she had to have constant nursing care. We knew it was becoming extremely bad when hospice came on the scene. Then, sadly, last month on Aug. 3, she died. She was not alone because her two daughters and one son-in-law were there with her. Sorry to say, Jean and I had just left 10 minutes before. May Ann rest in peace.

This article is dedicated to all the nurses and staff at Sarah Moore for their care of Ann Lee, during the years she was with you. Thank you!

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By Kay Conklin

Contributing columnist

Kay E. Conklin is a retired Delaware County recorder who served four terms. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a degree in sociology and anthropology.

Kay E. Conklin is a retired Delaware County recorder who served four terms. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a degree in sociology and anthropology.