Grace Buckwalter Lefever, 99, died Thursday, Oct. 4, 2012, at Oak Lea, Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community, Harrisonburg, Va.
Miss Lefever was born March 8, 1913, at Strasburg, Pa., and was a daughter of the late Abram K. Lefever and Lettie Buckwalter Lefever.
She graduated from high school at Eastern Mennonite School (now EMHS) in 1930; from Elizabethtown College with a B.S. in elementary education in 1935; from Pennsylvania State University with an M.E. in general science in 1950 and took additional classes at 10 other institutions from 1930 to 1972. She taught at Locust Grove Mennonite School, Lancaster, Pa., 1939-1943; mathematics and chemistry at Eastern Mennonite College and Eastern Mennonite High School, Harrisonburg, Va., from 1943 to 1975; and at Macha Secondary School, Choma, Zambia, under Mennonite Central Committee, from 1975 to 1978. In retirement, she tutored over 30 refugees in English as a second language and helped many prepare for citizenship. She was named a commended alumna in 1998 by EMHS for her service to the school, to local ministries, and especially to the refugee community.
She was a member of Park View Mennonite Church, where she was active in the church program, teaching vacation Bible school and Sunday school and participating in music and sewing ministries. She had a lifelong interest in music, as well as astronomy and bird-watching.
She is survived by two nieces, Leota Lefever Gandy of Lancaster, Pa., and Orpha E. Gehman of Denver, Pa.; also, one nephew, A. Jesse Gehman and wife, Joanne Yoder Gehman, of Ephrata, Pa. One sister, Mabel B. Gehman, and two brothers, John and Walter, preceded her in death.
A memorial service will be conducted at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012, at the Park View Mennonite Church by Pastors Phil Kniss and Owen Burkholder. A time of sharing and refreshments will follow.
She has requested that her body be donated to the Virginia Anatomical Program. Interment will occur later in the Mellinger’s Mennonite Cemetery, Lancaster, Pa.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Grace B. Lefever Endowed Scholarship at Eastern Mennonite University, 1200 Park Road, Harrisonburg, VA 22802.
Online condolences may be made to the family at www.mcmullenfh.com.