Family, friends, and the tender blooms from her garden were just a fraction of Martha Kennedy Wheeler’s great passions.
She came to the end of her full and remarkable life on the evening of Aug. 3, 2013 at The Four Seasons Retirement Center in Columbus, where she was a longtime resident.
She was 91-years-old. Martha was always a vibrant and graceful woman. She was born Jan. 19 1922 in New Castle, to Eugene and Mary Harry.
Upon her high school graduation, Martha married her longtime sweetheart, Harold Quentin Kennedy (Captain in the Army Air Corps in World War II) from March 16, 1940 until his death Dec. 24, 1976. Martha was later married to Charles (Charlie) Phil Wheeler from 1987 until his death in 2004.
Martha spent many happy years as a resident of Lake Santee near Greensburg, and could turn the most barren of landscapes into a corner of heaven on earth, rich with color and the scent of lilies.
Avid golfer, decorator, and entertainer, Martha enlivened others simply by being present. She brought creativity and wisdom to everything she did, from crafting stunning works of stained glass, to leading the first Women’s Disneyland Golf Association in Anaheim, Calif. as president, to operating her own antique/quilt shop, The Quilt Cabin, in Greensburg. She played a key role in fundraising for the stained glass windows at the Four Seasons Retirement Center Chapel, and lovingly prepared all altar flower arrangements for Sunday services. Martha never let an opportunity pass her by, and she rightfully gained the respect and affection of all she encountered.
She is survived by her children: Dana Paige Hubbard of Edinburg; Michael Dane Kennedy of Salisbury, Md.; and Laurie Kennedy Meek of Charlotte, N.C.; and her grandchildren: Jeffrey Quentin Williams; Christopher Michael Kennedy; LT Joshua David Meek; Erin Elizabeth Meek; Andrea Kennedy Smith; and Jessica Kennedy Kahn; and her great-grandchildren: Jasmine Kennedy; Sarah Nicole Williams; Rylie Kennedy Meek; Olivia Kennedy; Annabelle Whitley Meek; Kennedy Khan; and Wyatt Kennedy Smith. Martha is also survived by her brother, Donald Harry, her sister Phyllis Holloway, both of New Castle, and many nieces and nephews.
There will be a private memorial for Martha’s family in the fall of 2013.
A prolific and imaginative spirit, there can be no doubt that Martha brought much joy and beauty to the world. She was truly beloved and shall be missed terribly by those who survive her. But we shall always remember the smell of her freshly tilled garden, the taste of her piquant meals, and the feel of her strong embrace. We shall always remember her teachings of life and of endurance. And we shall always remember her infinite grace.
Arrangements by Myers-Reed Chapel, 3729 25th Street, Columbus.