Saturday, May 10, 2014

Opal Maxine Lease (May 7, 2014)

Opal Maxine Lease, age 96 of Greenville, Ohio passed away on Wednesday May 7, 2014 at the Brethren Retirement Community Greenville, Ohio.
She was born February 16, 1918 in Monroe Township, Darke County, Ohio to the late David and Mary (Taylor) Stager. She was a 1936 graduate of Franklin Township High School, Darke County, where her highlights were playing basketball, playing clarinet in the James Hopkins Orchestra, and being valedictorian of her class. She then earned the following degrees from Miami University: Diploma in Elementary Education in 1938, Bachelor of Science in Education in 1944, and Master of Education in 1962.

Opal was a lifelong educator who began her teaching career in Middletown, Ohio, serving 8 years as a 4th grade teacher. She then taught English and Physical Education for 8 years at Colonel White Junior High, in the Dayton Public School system, and one year in 3rd grade at Greenville North School before starting her family in 1956. She returned to education in 1964 teaching 6th grade at South School and serving as a guidance counselor for 16 years at Greenville Junior High, retiring in 1981. She initiated the special education, the OWA, and the gifted programs for Greenville Junior High.

Opal was baptized as a member of the Painter Creek Church of the Brethren and after marriage became a member of Wakefield Lutheran Church and then St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. She was a Sunday school teacher for over 25 years. She was a member of the Elite Club, Business and Professional Women’s Club, and the Darke County Retired Teachers Association, holding offices in each. In retirement she loved to square dance, create scrapbooks of family history, and sell fair tickets for the scholarship fund of BPW. She loved sports, lettering 4 years in basketball in high school, and was an enthusiastic fan of the Miami RedHawks and Cincinnati Reds.

She was married on December 28, 1949, to Clark Richard Lease, and has celebrated 64 years of marriage with her loving husband. Opal was preceded in death by her brother, Hollie William Stager. She is survived by her husband, Clark, two daughters, Deborah Lease of Oxford and Barbara (Jeff) Darkow of Avon Lake; three grandchildren, Sarah, Daniel, and James Darkow, a sister Louise Boli of Greenville and extended family and friends.

Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 10:00 A.M. in the St. Paul Lutheran Church 131 East Fourth St. Greenville, Ohio with Pastor Peter Menke officiating. Burial will follow in the Greenville Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Friday May 9, 2014 from 6:00 P.M. until 9:00 P.M. in the Zechar Bailey Funeral Home Greenville, Ohio and on Saturday 1 hour prior to the services in the church.

Memorial Contributions (in lieu of flowers) may be made to Families of SMA, in honor of her grandson, Daniel Darkow. Condolences for the family may be express through