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Margaret Mary Ryan, 83, of Findlay, passed away at 6:57 p.m., Friday, June 20, 2014, at Bridge Hospice Care Center. Marge was born on April 19, 1931, in Findlay, Ohio to the late Henry John and Margaret Elizabeth (Ferguson) Harrington. She was a 1949 graduate of Findlay High School, received her B.A. from St. Mary's College, Notre Dame in 1953 and her M.A. in History from Bowling Green State University in 1956. On November 17, 1956, she married Robert Eugene Ryan at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church, Findlay, Ohio and he preceded her in death on February 12, 2010.
She is survived by her son, Robert Grady (Vicki Cotten) Ryan of Houston, Texas; three grandchildren, Margaret Grace "Maggie" (Michael) Elgersma, Aurora, IL, Michael Grady Ryan, Montevideo, Uruguay, Jennifer Lea Ryan, College Station, TX, and three great-grandchildren, Grace, Charlotte and Olivia Elgersma. She is also survived by her sister-in-law, Kathleen Comerford, Peru, IN; nieces, Sue Harrington Williams, Anne Harrington Mallett, Janet Collins Holt, Margaret Collins, Sharon Ryan Phlegar, Maureen Ryan Johnson, Bridget Ryan Watson, Patricia Ryan Freeman and Colleen Ryan; nephews, John, Michael and Tom Harrington, Steve and Jim Collins, and Kevin and Tim Comerford, and "adopted" nieces, Annette Jones and Mary Taflinger Meshot.
She was preceded in death by her daughter, Kathleen Ryan Schnabele; brother, John Henry "Jack" Harrington; sister, Jean Marie Collins; brothers-in-law, Thomas Collins, Michael S. Ryan and Jack Comerford; sisters-in-law, Sara Jo Harrington and Rita Ryan, and nephews, Mark Comerford and Michael P. Ryan.
After initial teaching assignments at St. Mary's School in Monroe, Michigan and St. Mary's Campus School, Notre Dame, IN, Marge taught at Findlay Senior High School before devoting her teaching life to St. Michael Catholic School in Findlay where she taught for 30 years and was famously remembered for her three day Ohio History Trip she took the entire eighth grade class on at the end of each school year. After retiring from St. Michael's, she taught history and life skills to inmates of the Lima and Allen County Correctional Institution from 1990-1995 as part of a University of Findlay program. While she was learning and teaching in some way every day of her life, she also greatly enjoyed a second career as an antique dealer with her husband, Bob, displaying items in area shops for over twenty years.
She was a lifelong member of St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church, remaining active in many of its organizations until her death. She was a member of the St. Michael Association of Retired Teachers and Staff, and she formed the St. Michael School Enrichment Fund to give grants to teachers to encourage innovative projects and learning experiences for students. She was a past member of the board of directors of Catholic Charities of Toledo Diocese and on the Diocese Commission on Aging. She was a founder, board member and volunteer of Hope House; president of the International Relations Club at St. Mary's; past president and frequent speaker at the Meridian Club; Camp Fire Girls leader; and an officer and longtime active member of the Long Point Property Owners' Association.
Marge cherished the healing power of the Eucharist and loved being part of St. Michael's team of communion distributors at the hospital. Her faith, family, many friends and former students were the essence of her life, and in joyous recognition of her move to the church triumphant, those of all denominations are invited to a Mass of Christian Burial to be celebrated at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 12, 2014, at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church, East, (750 Bright Road) with Reverend Charles F. Ritter from Toledo Diocese and Reverend Monsignor Michael G. Hohenbrink officiating. Gravesite services will be held at St. Michael Catholic Cemetery immediately following the Mass. A subsequent reception where all are welcome will follow at the Knights of Columbus hall on the corner of West Main Cross and Western Avenue. Visitation will be held at Kirkpatrick-Behnke Funeral Home on Friday, July 11, 2014, from 4:00-8:00 p.m. with a scripture service commencing at 7:30 p.m.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Hancock Historical Museum, 422 West Sandusky St., Findlay, OH 45840 or to the St. Michael School Enrichment Fund, c/o St Michael Catholic Church, 750 Bright Road, Findlay, OH 45840.
Online condolences may be sent via
Kirkpatrick-Behnke Funeral Home Inc
500 Lima Ave Findlay, OH 45840
Published in Toledo Blade on June 25, 2014