Quilting 2

Arlene McKinnell

February 19, 1925 ~ September 12, 2022 (age 97)

Obituary


Arlene D. McKinnell of Brecksville, Ohio passed away on September 12, 2022 at the age of 97.

Beloved wife of Robert A. for 71 years. Loving mother of Susan McKinnell (Dan Geiger), Barbara Kachmarik (Andrew), Roberta Jefferies (Kent) and Rebecca McKinnell. Dear grandmother of Diane McLaine (Scott), Bonnie Jefferies (Bryan Willham), Brian Jefferies (Jen), and Linda Jefferies. Great Grandmother of Ryan, Adam and Rachel McLaine, Alexander Willham, Tyler, Sandy, Emerson and Elliot Jefferies. Cherished aunt and friend to many. 

Arlene was born in Danville, Pennsylvania in 1925. She grew up in Philadelphia where she attended Girls High School and later the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia). While attending college, she met her husband Bob, who was also a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton School of Business). They were married in 1947 and welcomed their first child, Susan, while still living in Philadelphia. 

Bob worked for Eveready Battery Company (the Union Carbide) and the family was transferred to St. Albans, Vermont in 1951. There they had three more daughters. In 1960, the family moved again when Bob was transferred to Lakewood, Ohio. After their children were grown, Bob and Arlene lived in Brecksville, Ohio for forty-five years. During their final years in Brecksville, they were blessed with a wonderful caregiver and "adopted" son, Stan Searles.

Arlene was a talented watercolor artist and pianist. She was a drummer for her high school band. She also had numerous other hobbies and interests that included bobbin-lace making, spinning and knitting, and calligraphy. She belonged to a club called "Sampler" that explored historical events, unique collections and antiques. Arlene, along with her daughters Barbara and Roberta, volunteered for Bell Pioneers, an AT&T organization (a company where her daughter Sue worked for many years). The group made comfort pillows and Teddy Bears for children and nursing homes. Arlene also volunteered her time at the William G. Mather Museum, where her daughter, Becky, was the Director of Restoration.

While raising her four girls, Arlene worked as a research technician for both Fairview Hospital and University Hospital. When her children were young, she worked evenings at The Higbee Company. During her retirement, she worked at Hale Farm and Village, demonstrating the spinning wheel and bobbin-lace making. She also taught and wrote a book on lace-making. She gave many demonstrations on both crafts at the Strongsville Days and many other venues around the area. She even spun wool from the sheep at the Cleveland Zoo. 

The family will hold a Private Memorial Service to celebrate Arlene's life at a later date.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Arlene McKinnell, please visit our floral store.

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