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Published: Wednesday, 10/6/2004

Church organist was volunteer for elderly

LEIPSIC, Ohio - Mary Agnes Schumaker, 91, organist at St. Mary's Catholic Church here for 55 years and an avid volunteer for the elderly, died of heart problems Monday in St. Rita's Medical Center, Lima, Ohio.

Miss Schumaker was a church organist from about 1944 until about 1999, when she retired.

In her free time, she volunteered to drive the elderly to doctor appointments and visited them in nursing homes for many years until about three weeks ago.

"She was very religious," her nephew-in-law, Dennis Halker, said. "She loved everybody, and everybody loved her. And she was like a mother to her nephew and her nieces, and like a grandmother to their children."

A Leipsic native, Miss Schumaker learned the basics of playing the organ at St. Ursula Academy, Toledo, which she attended in the late 1920s, and taught herself the rest, becoming proficient at it.

In the early 1930s, she was a clerk at the former Finney's Market, Leipsic, and later worked at the former Egry Register print shop, also in Leipsic, until retiring in the early 1960s.

Miss Schumaker enjoyed visiting and entertaining friends and relatives, eating out, sewing, crossword puzzles, and watching soap operas on television.

Miss Schumaker was a lifetime member of St. Mary's Catholic Church, where she was active in the Altar Rosary Society.

There are no immediate survivors.

The body will be in the Love Funeral Home, Leipsic, after 2 p.m. today, with an Altar Rosary Society service sometime between 7 and 7:30 tonight. Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow in St. Mary's Catholic Church, Leipsic.

It is suggested that tributes be to a charity of the donor's choice.

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