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Diane Lynn Masserant, who spent much of her time on her farm or at her restaurant, died Sunday after complications from a heart attack suffered 10 days earlier. She was 60. Her husband, Terry, said she was scheduled for potential life-saving surgery Monday at the University of Toledo Medical Center, formerly the Medical College of Ohio Hospital, but had a massive stroke Sunday. Mrs. Masserant worked in the dental field for more than 25 years before losing her job and deciding to open her own business. Eagle's Nest Sweet Retreat opened in 2005 on South Stadium Road in Oregon, across the street from Clay High School. Mrs. Masserant, born July 27, 1956, designed the space and menu herself, and ran the establishment with the help of her husband and a son, Greyson. "The first day we opened up was a disaster," Mr. Masserant said. "We didn't expect the amount of customers we had. She didn't really have any restaurant experience, but we got to the point where she was becoming very business-savvy and things were good." Students, birders, vacationers at Maumee Bay State Park, and others regularly stopped in for hand-dipped ice cream, pizza, or a grinder. Eagle's Nest gained a reputation for having no infractions whenever the health department visited, which its owner took pride in. "One health inspector told her, 'I wish I could have you as an educator to teach the proper methods,'" her husband said. "We knew we couldn't compete with fast food chains, but she always took pride in making a first-class product. When you got a banana split or a sundae, most people had to take a picture of it before they ate it." The couple built their dream house in Curtice in 1984, but Mrs. Masserant had wanted to live on a farm for years. In 2000, they bought a 100-acre farm in Genoa as an anniversary gift to each other. Mrs. Masserant loved animals, and kept lambs, goats, a horse, and other animals at the farm over the years. About 100 steer have called Anniversary Acres home, including 20 or 30 calves. "One day, I came home from a work meeting at the Toledo Zoo and there was a strange truck in the driveway," Mr. Masserant said. "Somebody was dropping off two lambs. I said, 'You're turning this place into a zoo. I just left a zoo.' "But she would go out and talk to the animals. That would be her getaway to make her feel good." Surviving are her husband, Terry; sons, Justin and Greyson; father, Clair Huss; brother, Dan Huss; and sisters, Debbie Emmett, Darla Clark, and Delinda Baker. The family is holding a private service today. Donations can be made to a charity of the donor's choice in Mrs. Masserant's name. This is a news story by Blade staff writer Jay Skebba. Contact him at jskebba@theblade.com , 419-376-9414, or on Twitter @JaySkebbaBlade.
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