Edith R. Heywood

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YORK Edith R. Heywood, 89, Springettsbury Township, died at home Saturday, February 15, 2014, in the loving company of her family. She was the beloved wife of her late husband, Harold Heywood, her dance partner of 64 years. Edith was the daughter of German immigrants who highly treasured art and music. Her father was a sculptor and stone-cutter, and her mother worked at home. Her uncle was a founding member and concert-master of the Green Bay Symphony orchestra, and a talented painter. Edith was a church organist for churches in West Allis and Greendale, Wis., and occasionally in York, her career spanning nearly 40 years. On Christmas Eve, at the age of five, Santa brought her a piano. Years of lessons with professor Ludolph Arens were the background melody of her childhood and youth, and by her teens, she had become a concert pianist, playing with the Green Bay Symphony and other orchestras. After graduating from Rufus King High School in Milwaukee (1943), she attended a business institute. Upon completion of her studies, Edith worked for the New England Life Insurance Company as a stenographer and typist. She began to study organ at the Milwaukee Conservatory of Music, where she met Harold, who studied organ in preparation to becoming a chaplain's assistant in the army. They became engaged just as Harold was sent to war in Europe, exchanging letters for over two years while he was overseas. He was discharged from the army in 1946, and they married the following year. They lived in Milwaukee and had three children together. After their third child was born, Edith became organist at the First West Allis Methodist Church. When they moved to nearby Greendale, she eventually became organist at the Community Church. Her musical career expanded as she accompanied students for their recitals, was pianist for plays given by the Suburban Players, and played in bell choirs. She also worked for Greendale Public Schools as secretary and classroom aide for 22 years. She participated in the P.T.A. and women's club. In all her many pursuits, her chief accomplishment was as loving wife and mother. Her cooking, gardening, and home-making abilities were par excellence. Edith had great energy and a generous heart. She always had time to play with, listen to, and care for her growing family. When she retired in 1987, she and Harold traveled to see children and grandchildren. They eventually moved to York to be near their daughter Linda and family. Their travels included Europe, the Caribbean, and Canada. Edith joined Welcome Wagon in York, became a member of Trinity U.C.C., where she volunteered in the church office and visited shut-ins. She enjoyed exercising at the Jewish Community Center, volunteer work with the York Symphony, attending local music events, and her beloved dog, Bella. Edith was a shining light to all of those who knew her. Her grace, dignity, and deep gratitude for life's blessings carried her peacefully to the end. She is survived by daughters, Linda Heywood of Airville, and Wendy (Jay) Quarless of Melbourne, Fla.; son, Stuart (Cathy) Ongley-Heywood of Jamestown, N.Y.; eight grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and her brother, Wally Roegner of Milwaukee, Wis. After cremation, a memorial service is scheduled at Etzweiler Funeral Home, 1111 E. Market St., York, at 10 a.m. Saturday. Burial will be at Prospect Hill Cemetery immediately following. Memorial contributions may be made to the aptly named Visiting Angels, 1840 E. Market St., York, PA 17402. www.etzweiler.com
Funeral Home
Etzweiler Funeral Home
1111 East Market Street
York, PA
(717) 843-0216
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Published in York Daily Record & York Dispatch on Feb. 19, 2014
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