John E. Stenger

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HANOVER John Emerson Stenger, 91, entered into God's eternal care on Thursday, April 3, 2014, at Manor Care North, York. He was the beloved husband of Ayleen (Miller) Stenger. They celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary on February 2, 2014, together-as-one. John was born on July 19, 1922, in Akron, Ohio. He grew up during the Depression and served with distinction in the U.S. Army during WWII. He earned the Purple Heart and also the Bronze Star for carrying a wounded buddy to safety - "I simply could not ignore his cries; no one else was responding." During The Battle of the Bulge one evening, a German soldier stumbled into John's foxhole "I took him prisoner and so we spent the night together. In the morning I turned him in." Near the end of WWII, John and a friend met the Russians at the Elbe River for an informal get together of sharing favorite songs and a little vodka, too. On February 2, 1946, John married Ayleen, the love of his life. Graduating from Akron University with a B.S. in Chemistry, he joined B.F. Goodrich, later becoming a buyer in the Purchasing Dept. Promoted to Director of BFG's Singapore Office in the early 1950's, he lived and traveled throughout Southeast Asia. Soon after returning to the U.S., he joined Baird Rubber & Trading in New York City, where he worked for almost 25 years, eventually becoming its Vice-President. He and family lived in New Providence, N.J., where they were members of New Providence Presbyterian Church. Retiring in the mid 1980's, John moved to Hanover, to enjoy quieter times with his family mowing the grass, landscaping the yard, and going on cruise vacations. He also relished weekly conversations with his friends, The Talkmeisters, at the Hanover Elks. When once asked to characterize his life, he said - "I know I was fortunate to have survived (WWII) to have the opportunity to enjoy a normal life, a very happy marriage and family, good health and countless blessings. I am grateful to God and I hope my life has reflected the love of Jesus without too many exceptions." John is survived by his wife, Ayleen Stenger; his daughter, Lynn D. Riese and husband, Bob of Hanover; his son, Jack D. Stenger and wife, Linda of Harrisonburg, Va.; and his twin brother, Charles A. Stenger and wife, Mary Lou of Rockville, Md. He is also survived by two grandchildren, Heather L. Riese of Pittsburgh, and Heidi Riese Smith and her husband, Conrad of Zelienople; and one great-grandchild, Amanda Ayleen Smith. He was preceded in death by three sisters, Kathryn Garcia, Dorothy Lichtenberger, and Marge Mueller, all of Ohio. The family will hold a private memorial service at a future date.
Published in Evening Sun on Apr. 8, 2014
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