Elsie Jane (Locke) Lewandoski, age 86, passed away on May 17, 2023.
She was born in Sebring, Ohio on December 7, 1936 to Arline E. (Zeitz) and Lester O. Locke.
She attended eight years at Maple Ridge Grade School and graduated from Sebring High School in 1954.
Elsie loved sports and played four years basketball and softball. She also loved drama and was very active in school plays. Her love for animals never ceased and always had some kind of pet, dogs or her car, Georgie.
During the summer months of high school, she worked at her father’s pottery cleaning his office and became a playground supervisor at the Southside playground during her four years of high school. After graduation, she became employed at the French Saxon Pottery as a clerk and part-time switchboard operator. In 1955, she was hired by the late “Pop” Alexander to become clerk of the Morgan Engineering Credit Union and later hired to personnel clerk, under Robert Bansberg, Morgan Engineering Company.
In 1956, she married Russell Ramser and raised two children. She returned to work at Highland Memorial Cemetery and later transferred to Sunset Hills Cemetery in North Canton. She and Russell’s marriage ended up in dissolution and both re-married.
In 1979, she was hired by Harry Wheaton, Alliance Law Director, to cover a maternity leave secretarial position in the prosecutor’s office. In 1980, she then worked for Wheaton and Morris Attorney office. In 1981, she was hired in the Alliance Municipal Court by Chief Deputy Clerk, Jo Ann Burr, as a deputy clerk of criminal and traffic. She loved her job, but missed her children who lived in Las Vegas, NV. She married Vernon “Bill” Knowles in 1981. In 1991, she retired from the municipal court and moved to Las Vegas to be closer to her first born grandchild.
Elsie loved being retired only for a short time and went back to work. She worked at Bob Stupeck’s Vegas World as a vacation planner and casino teller, but she didn’t like night shifts. She did clerical work for one of the largest car dealers, Pat Clark Pontiac in Las Vegas, for five years. Later she was hired by JC Penney’s as MA in charge of men’s clothing and became a certified men’s suit fitter and later a certified bra fitter. While in Vegas, she met a lot of wonderful people, including Betty Jones, whom she and Bill would never forget. Also James Lowery who lived next door and was later brought to Ohio with Elsie’s help. In 2000, her late husband was diagnosed with liver cancer and they moved back to Ohio in 2002. She transferred to JC Penney’s in Alliance and retired in August 2006, due to breast cancer.
She held many offices in the BPO Elks #467 ladies auxiliary, becoming President in 1975-1976, President of Past Presidents Club three years, member of American Legion Aux #166, VFW Auxiliary #1035, member 600 Club Bowling, AWBA 500 Club, AARP Local #2630 and Christian Women United.
She loved to dance, doing for others and especially making her own homemade cards on the computer.
She is survived by her husband, Richard D. Lewandoski, whom she married March 17, 2007; her sister, Barbara (Phillip) Sanderson; daughter, Karen Hill; granddaughters, Kaile, Jenna and Jori Hill; step-son, David (Marliee) Lewandoski; step-grandchildren, Amber Lewandoski, Marjorie Grafton; and nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her late husband of 23 years, Vernon Knowles; son, Kevin Ramser; her parents; grandparents; sister, Joyce (Chuck) Tausch; infant brother; step-father; infant grandson, Adam; and several aunts and uncles.
A funeral service will be held at Cassaday-Turkle-Christian Funeral Home on Tuesday, May 23, at 12:00 p.m. with a visitation two hours prior.
Memorial contributions may be made to First Christian Church, 1141 W Beech St, Alliance, OH 44601 or the Stark County Humane Society, P.O. Box 7077, Canton, Ohio 44705.