Lila June Zehr King

Lila June (Zehr) King, 78, of Harrisonburg, passed away on Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019, at Sentara RMH Medical Center.

Lila was born July 1, 1941 in Foosland, Illinois, and was the daughter of the late Harold Arthur and Alma Pearl (Unzicker) Zehr. Lila graduated from Roanoke, (Ill.) High School in 1959. Following a gap year, she continued her education, earning a bachelor’s of science in nursing degree in nursing from Goshen College. Her professional career included working in hospital pediatric departments, teaching pediatrics in Goshen College’s nursing program, director of nursing at Boone County Hospital in Iowa, school nurse and home health care. Upon moving to the Shenandoah Valley in 1993, she worked in public health for the Virginia Department of Health. Her patience and congenial personality greatly aided in her patient contacts.

On Aug. 20, 1965, she married Ronald King. Together, they had one daughter and one son. Lila worked and supported the family while Ron completed his veterinary education. As a result, she was awarded a PHT degree (Putting Hubby Through) at Iowa State University. From 1969–1993, they lived in Clinton, Wisconsin and moved to Harrisonburg in 1993. Lila was an active volunteer at church, Clinton Junior Women’s Club, Harrisonburg’s Free Clinic, Artisan’s Hope in Harrisonburg, with Mennonite Mission Network’s volunteer program in Glendale, Arizona, and Ten Thousand Villages in Atlantic, Canada. In retirement, the Kings traveled as much as possible, covering all of the U.S. states, much of Canada, Israel and Jorden, The Galopagos Islands, Ecuador and multiple trips to Europe. She thoroughly enjoyed reading, hiking, exercising, baking and doting on her grandchildren. An additional highlight was hosting veterinary students from Denmark and Norway for 10 years during summers in Wisconsin. Long lasting relationships were built from these experiences. Lila was a former member of the American Baptist Churches of Clinton and Beloit, Wisconsin, and a very active member of the SALT Class, Harrisonburg Mennonite Church. Lila was a very loving person and possessed the gift “of knowing what to do and when to do it!” Likewise she was gifted with the ability to give guidance and encouragement to victims experiencing a variety of health issues. She detested recognition and was a true “Gift of God.”

Lila is survived by her husband, Ron, her daughter, Jana King Allen and husband, Brooks Allen, of McLean; son, Reg King and his wife, Tanya Forsheit, of Manhattan Beach, California; grandchildren, Ian King, Keira Allen, Brooks Edward Eli Allen, and Talia King; siblings, Hazel Yoder, Goshen, Indiana, and Allen Zehr, Bedford, Indiana; numerous nieces, nephews and cousins, and two very special college nursing classmates who were her close friends for 59 years, Sara Gingerich Wengerd and Mary Chupp Yoder. She was predeceased by her parents, two sisters and three brothers, Edith, Rachel, Wesley Jay, John and Dean Zehr.

Visitation is scheduled for 6-8 pm, Friday, Sept. 27, 2019, in the Fellowship Hall of Harrisonburg Mennonite Church. The family will be present. A memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019, at the Harrisonburg Mennonite Church with the Rev. Craig Maven and Pastor Sherah-Leigh Gerber officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: RMH Hahn Cancer Center, Harrisonburg, VA; Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival, c/o Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, VA; Mennonite Central Committee, Ephrata, PA, or the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Free Clinic.

Those wishing to share a memory or an online condolence may do so by visiting

Arrangements entrusted to the McMullen Funeral Home, Harrisonburg, 540-833-2891.

The family extends its gratefulness to the physicians and staff of Sentara RMH Hospital and the Hahn Cancer Center, family and many friends for their support and encouragement.

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