Mary Ford, who spent her life helping others, died Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2011 at the Harrison County Home, Cadiz. Born March 4, 1931, her parents were the late L. Milton and Isabel (McConnell) Ronsheim.
She graduated from Cadiz High School in 1949 as class valedictorian and from The College of Wooster, class of 1953. She also graduated from the National Park Service Field School of Natural History at Yosemite, California. Upon college graduation, Mary worked as laboratory technician in veterinary pathology at the Ohio Research and Development Center in Wooster and The Ohio State Veterinary College. Additionally, she spent many years working alongside her grandfather, father and oldest brother at The Cadiz Republican. She married Thomas R. Ford on August 5, 1954, and in 1957 they made their home in Cadiz, the town Mary loved.
More than one generation of former Cadiz students will remember Mary, the substitute teacher and tutor who delighted in reading to them, especially Charlotte’s Web. In addition to “subbing,” Mary could be found voicing her opinion at village council and school board meetings, organizing dinners and cooking in the Cadiz Presbyterian Church kitchen, recording statistics on local conditions as a weather observer for the US Weather Service and compiling the National Audubon Christmas Bird Census, as well as feeding and caring for stray cats at Sally Buffalo park. Over the years Mary has compiled news items taken from past editions of her family’s newspaper The Cadiz Republican. These “Twice Told Tales” have been a well-read column in The Harrison News-Herald. Mary’s interests were broad. She not only loved birds and plant life but was an expert on their identification. She was an active member of the Presbyterian Church of Cadiz and its choir, the Cadiz Business Association, the Moravian Chapter of the DAR, the Brooks Bird Club of Wheeling and served on the nature committee of the Schrader nature center.
She is survived by her husband of 57 years, Tom of Cadiz, sisters-in-law, Nately Ronsheim, Patricia Ronsheim, Eileen Ronsheim and Joan Iverson; nieces and nephews, Pam, Doug, Kate, Paul Andrew, Marty, Amy, Meg, Ellice, Susan, Paul Mark and Phoebe; 17 great-nieces and nephews; five great, great-nieces and nephews and her cats, Missy, Janey, Stranger and Orange.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her four brothers, Milton Mc., Samuel, Robert and John Richard.
A service celebrating Mary’s life will be held at the Presbyterian Church of Cadiz, Ohio on Saturday, Aug. 27 at 2 p.m. Prior to the service, the family will receive friends from 12:30 – 2 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Harrison County Home, 41500 Cadiz-Dennison Road, Cadiz, OH 43907 in Mary’s name. Arrangements are by Clark- Kirkland Funeral home, Cadiz. On-line condolences may be made at www.clark-kirkland.com.