Madge Elaine Lehnert passed from this world to the next on March 2, 2021.
She was born Oct. 26, 1924, in North Fairfield, Oh, the daughter of Ralph and Myrta (Woodworth) Kime. She grew up on the family farm with two sisters, Arlene (Rodger) Whetstone, deceased, and Dorothy (Cliff) Currier of Medina Ohio.
Madge’s life was filled with music from early childhood. Her parents encouraged the girls to play musical instruments such as piano, guitar, saxophone while her father played fiddle. Her father was a self-taught “old-time fiddler and square dance caller”. The family became well known as “the Kime Family Orchestra” and played for dances and events throughout the area.
Madge graduated high school and went on to earn a Bachelor of Music Education from Kent State University. She taught music in Mentor and Crawford County, and then in the Jefferson Area school system.
She met the love of her life, Robert Lehnert, at 4H camp when he dunked her in the river. They dated through high school until he left to serve with the Combat Engineers in the European Theater. Upon his return, they were married on Aug. 2, 1947.
In 1954 they bought the Lehnert Funeral Home and their life in Jefferson began. Madge received her funeral director license and was a co-owner of the funeral home with her husband. She kept the business in good shape through her compassion, and bookkeeping skills. They were active members of the Tri-county, Ohio and National Funeral Directors Associations, and developed long-lasting friendships with their colleagues.
Bob and Madge had four children, Jane Louise (Bob) Snyder, Maryland; Barbara Jean (Denis) O’Keefe, Virginia; David Robert (Christine) Lehnert, Ashtabula; Anne Marie (Brian) Thompson, Bay Village. They had eleven grandchildren, and by April 2021 eight great grandchildren. She enjoyed spending time with her family and cherished her friendships throughout her life. Her positive personality was infectious and she had that indelible ability to make everyone feel at home in her company.
Madge was an integral part of the Jefferson United Methodist Church since arriving in Jefferson. She served first as a youth leader with Bob, as choir director of Adult, Youth and Junior Choirs, was a piano teacher to local children, was an Administrator Board Member, and served on the Worship and Music Committee, the Finance Committee, Memorial Fund Committee, and other
Community involvement was a large part of her life. She served on many community boards and committees including: being a driving force behind the creation of SOCC with securing the funding for The Support Our Community Center (SOCC), The P.T.A., a girl Scout Leader, a member of the Jefferson Grange, Eastern Star, League of Women Voters, Recreation Board, Chamber of Commerce, Jefferson Education Foundation Board, The Jefferson High School Music Boosters Association past president, Athletic Boosters, a member of the Messiah Chorus in Ashtabula, A Red Cross Bloodmobile Volunteer, and The Henderson Memorial Library Funding and Investment Committee.
Madge was a Board member of the Ashtabula County Choral Music Society and she was a founding member of the Jefferson Gazebo Committee. In addition she served on the selection committee for the Jaycees Robert E. Lehnert Memorial Scholarship Fund. She also taught classes on grieving at Jefferson High School and the Vo Ed School.
She was a member of the Ashtabula Zonta Club and received Outstanding Service Award 1980. She was recognized by the Jefferson Chamber of Commerce as Citizen of the Year 1991 and received the Lifetime of Service Award in 2004
She received the Ashtabula County Choral Music Society Lifetime Achievement Award, 2015.
Madge is survived by her sister Dorothy Currier (Clifford) and children Jane Snyder (Robert), Barbara O’Keefe (Denis), David Lehnert, Anne Thompson (Brian). Grandchildren: Skye, Jesse, Rhapsody, Kevin, Daniel, Ashley, Molly, Griffin, Kyle, Brett, and 6 great grandchildren.
She is preceded in death by her husband Robert, her sister Arlene Whetstone, Daughter-in-law, Christine Haskins Lehnert, grand-daughter, Paulette Snyder.
THE FUNERAL SERVICE
The March 9, 2021, 12:00 PM Memorial Service is at the Jefferson United Methodist Church, 125 East Jefferson St., with a graveside service following at Oakdale Cemetery.
There will be livestream for overflow in Wesley Hall and from the Jefferson United Methodist Church Facebook page. This can be accessed from the Facebook app on their web-site, or this link:
Contributions can be made to the Jefferson United Methodist Church memorial fund. https://www.jeffersonumc.com
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Madge Elaine (Kime) Lehnert, please visit our floral store.
Jefferson United Methodist Church
125 East Jefferson St., Jefferson OH 44047