Annabelle R. Vandemark, 96, of Elida, passed away on Wednesday, April 11, 2018, at Vancrest Healthcare Center of Delphos.
Annabelle grew up as a Northwest Ohio farm girl. She and her late husband, Wilbur, established, developed and managed their grain and livestock farm into one of Ohio’s top recognized Ayrshire dairy herd. She had no dull moments as a farm wife and mother of four. She encouraged each of her children to understand, to learn from and to enjoy their rural-farm heritage and up-bringing. She could drive any type of farm machinery and bake the best pies. She believed faith in God and hard work were the answers to survival until called to one’s heavenly home.
At age 50, she realized a life-long dream by completing her Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) degree. She worked as an ENT surgical nurse and Cardiac Critical Care Nurse.
All her life, she had a deep interest in art. It began in high school when she drew and painted posters for various school events. She taught herself to paint with watercolors. She honored her talent through much practice and became an award-winning artist. In 1986 she founded the Lima Area Watercolor Society (LAWS) that remains an active group of learning artists. She taught watercolor classes from her country home studio. For over twenty-five years she prepared an annual solo artist’s show displaying it at the Lima Civic Center. Her artwork can be found in churches, government buildings, businesses and private homes throughout the US.
She lived a full life of loving and supporting her family, giving to our community, and pursuing her passions. Annabelle was born on August 12, 1921, to Sherman and Lillis (McKelvey) Ross. They both preceded her in death. She was united in marriage to Wilbur Vandemark on February 22, 1941; he preceded her in death on January 16, 2005. Other survivors include her children, Debra (Craig) Salhoff of Hagerstown, IN., Keaton (Janie Watkins) Vandemark of Spring Hope, N.C., Marsha Vandemark of Williston, OH and Larry (Sharon Brenneman) Vandemark of Elida, OH. eight grandchildren; Beth (Rick) Hamman, Jill (Nathan) Lewis, Trevor (Angie) Vandemark, Tyler (Boots) Vandemark, Dean Vandemark, Shawn (Wendy) Vandemark, Jared Vandemark, and Jeff (Gina) Vandemark and 17 great-grandchildren. Her family was her pride and joy. Her faith in God was her strength.
She was preceded in death by a sister, Leora Thomas and a brother, Willis Ross.
Funeral services will be on Saturday, April 21, 2018, at 11:00 a.m. with visitation one hour prior to the service at Immanuel United Methodist Church in Elida. Reverend Bruce Tumblin will officiate. Burial will follow in Greenlawn Cemetery. Friends may call on Friday, April 20, 2018, from 2-8p.m. at Harter and Schier Funeral Home in Delphos. Memorial contributions may be made to Immanuel United Methodist Church or Lutheran Home of Mercy in Williston, OH.