Bernice H. "Blondie" Rieger
OTTOVILLE - Bernice H. “Blondie” Rieger, 93, of Ottoville passed away the morning of December 26, 2020 at Mercy Health St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima, Ohio. She was briefly hospitalized after having tested positive for COVID-19.
Bernice was born on April 21, 1927 in Fort Jennings, Ohio to the late Arnold and Ida M. (Wieging) Martin. On April 30, 1949 she married George G. Rieger. George died February 2, 1981.
She was also pre-deceased by an infant son, Thomas Joseph “Angel Tommy” Rieger April 17, 1965.
She is survived by 8 children: Sue Ann (Verl) Dasher of Paulding, Vivian (Robert) Langhals, Nancy (Jim) Ricker of Fort Jennings, Connie (Kenny) Knippen, Shirley (Terry) Miller, Tim (Toni Jill Rellinger) Rieger, Jennifer (Mike) Bendele, and Tony (Tess Stimmel) Rieger. Also surviving are her dearly loved 19 grandchildren - Dawn Gaspar, Sherri Rager, Daryl Dasher, Matt and Jon Langhals, Laura Conaway, Michelle Helmig, Mark and Todd Knippen, Nick Miller, Jesselyn Michaud, Ali Tracy, Christopher Rieger, Audrey Lehman, Drew and Seth Bendele, Anna Kahle, Emily Deitsch and Jamie Rieger. Bernice was affectionately called G-G-ma by her 24 great grandchildren with another expected in April 2021.
Bernice is also survived by one brother, Robert and Eileen “Dolly” Martin of Landeck and sister-in law, Patricia (James) Martin of Ottoville.
Preceding her in death were immediate family and in-laws Velma and Jerome “Whitey” Altenburger, Leroy “Pep” and Virginia Martin, James (Patricia) Martin, Joan “Tooter” and Ronnie Wessell, Euletta Rieger, Ethel Rieger, and Ruth and Eugene Hoehn.
Bernice graduated from Ottoville High School in the same 1945 class as George. She attended Tiffin University. Her early working career included King’s Market, Delphos Cigar Factory, and raising their children. She later worked as a bookkeeper alongside her husband at George N. Rieger & Son Plumbing and Heating. After George died, she stayed working in the business at Knueve and Sons in Kalida, from where she retired in April 1992.
Bernice was a member of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, the Rosary Altar Society, and the Catholic Ladies of Columbia, Ottoville. She served as a former member and past president of the Ottoville VFW Ladies Auxiliary and was a 4-H sewing advisor. Bernice stayed involved in her beloved community having submitted the winning design of the official Village of Ottoville flag.
Bernice's hobbies included crafting of all types, especially sewing, where she made well over 100 clown dolls distributed among family and many donated. She and George were members of the Ohio Polka Boosters and so enjoyed dancing with the gang. Bernice was best known in the kitchen for her homemade noodles, but there were many family favorites. She especially liked riding her bicycle, gardening, puzzles and sitting on her back porch where she fed squirrels at her feet.
Most of all, she always looked forward to the next Rieger family beach vacation and still went at the age of 90.
Although our mother deserves a beautiful tribute, the family appreciates and understands that in this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, attending a visitation may not be in your best health interest. Therefore there will be no public visitation or viewing.
Funeral mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, December 30, 2020 at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Ottoville with Father Jerome Schetter officiating. The mass will be viewable on Facebook live. Burial will follow in St. Mary's Cemetery, Ottoville. Masks will be required upon entering the church. Arrangements are under the direction of LOVE-HEITMEYER FUNERAL HOME, Jackson Township.
Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of the donor's choice in memory of Bernice.
Condolences may be expressed at www.lovefuneralhome.com
To send flowers to Bernice's family, please visit our floral store.