Wanda Olive (Ries) Prior

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PRIOR Wanda Olive (Ries) Prior. Beloved wife, mother, sister, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend to many, passed away peacefully on March 22, 2010 at the young age of 93. Wanda was born December 3, 1916 in a log house located in York Township, Van Wert County, Ohio. She was the daughter of the late William Henry Ries and Hazel Iona (Farling) Ries. She was a lifelong resident of Van Wert until 1993 when she moved to Columbus to care for her husband of 55 years, Henry Prior. Wanda graduated from York High School as president of her class. She worked during her high school days at the Harris Beauty Shop. She attended Lima Beauty School and Community College. In l938, she married Henry C. Prior. Wanda was an active member of the Kingsley church in York Township where she taught the children's Sunday School Class. During her life time, she organized the York Dutchess 4-H Club and was elected the first president. After working in Cleveland, Ohio at the OrDoutsh Beauty Salon, she struck out on her own and established the La Charm Beauty Salon in Van Wert, later known as Wanda Prior's Beauty Shop in York Township. In addition to her salon, Wanda also operated a tourist home and was also an active member of the Wassenberg Art Center. In 1950 she retired from the beauty business and became Office Manager and Secretary of the Prior and Associates Insurance Agency. She was guest speaker at the Columbus Mutual Life Insurance Co. International Convention and spoke at various Life Insurance Agency meetings in Indiana and Ohio. Wanda was a member of the First United Methodist Church for many years and was active in the Hal Hunt Sunday School Class, and the Women's Society of Christian Services. Her hobbies were Sewing, Ceramics, Oil Painting, and hunting Mushrooms. Wanda's crowning achievement was the three children that she raised. Her children would like to remember her for her unconditional love and support of them and their children. She was always the life of the party and never failed to brighten a room she was in. She loved and adored her family and in later years, it was her children, grandchildren and great- grandchildren that kept her going. She is survived by her daughter, Monda Sue Prior LICSW of Dennis, Massachusetts; and her son, Dr. Gregory R. (Elizabeth) Prior of Dunedin, Florida; sisters, Ruth Reed of Grover Hill, Ohio and Margaret Springer of Sun City Center, Fl; grandchildren, Holly (Todd) LeBart of Wellfleet, Massachusetts, Laura (Mark) Frangillo of Winchester, Massachusetts, Spencer (Carla) Laemmle of Dennis, Ma., Heather Hartzell of Lewis Center, Ohio, Stephanie (Lee) Marxen of Powell, Ohio, Suzanne (Richard) Van Schaik of Galena, Ohio, and Kathleen (Gregory) Hadder of Lewis Center, Ohio and Bailey Prior of Dunedin, Fl.; 18 great- grandchildren, Charles and Brittany Marxen, Zachary, Hannah, and Matthew Hartzell, Michael, Christian, Brianna, and Alaina Van Schaik, Noelle Hadder, Samantha and Max Meehan, Louie and Nick LeBart, Leo and Ruby Laemmle and Marco and Samantha Frangillo. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband Henry Prior, her beloved daughter Janice (Prior) Dugan, son-in-law Charles Dugan, three brothers William Sr., Wayne, and Paul Edward Ries, a nephew Steve Ries, a niece Marjorie (Ries) Barber, a brother-in-law Homer J. Reed, and two sisters-in-law Rita (Stahl) Ries and Lola Ries. The Family will receive friends on March 28, 2010 at the COWAN AND SON FUNERAL HOME, Van Wert, Ohio from 1-6 p.m. Funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on March 29, 2010 at the First United Methodist Church, Central Avenue in Van Wert, Ohio. Messages may be forward to the family through the cowanfh@yahoo.com. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made in honor of Wanda Prior C/O First United Methodist Church, Van Wert, Ohio.
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