Rhoda B. Metzler

Metzler, Rhoda photo

Rhoda B. Metzler, 103, formerly of Randolph and Dennis Port, MA and Englewood, FL, passed away at Landis Homes, Lititz, PA on Friday, November 22, 2019. She was born in Salisbury Township, PA, to the late Clayton and Ella (Buckwalter) Hershey. Rhoda shared 66 years of marriage with her husband A. Raymond Metzler before his death in 2002.

A wonderful homemaker for her family, Rhoda was the best cook, especially her lasagna, chicken corn chowder and delicious treats at Christmas. She loved to knit, having knitted over 400 caps for babies and cancer patients. Rhoda also enjoyed quilt knotting and sewing.

Rhoda volunteered at local church thrift shops in Yarmouth, MA and at Landis Homes, as well as for Meals on Wheels. She was a long-time member of Randolph (MA) Congregational Church and Calvary Church, Lancaster, PA.

Rhoda is survived by her daughter Nancy M., wife of Roger Gale, Woodstock, CT, her son Steven K. Metzler, husband of Patricia (McCarthy), Lawrence, KS, and seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. In addition to her parents and husband, Rhoda was preceded in death by her son Eric C. Metzler in 2012 and her eight siblings, Clyde Hershey, Grace Hersey, Paul Hershey, Ruth Denlinger, Marian Witmer, Amy Groff, Elsie Hershey and Clair Hershey.

A future memorial service for Rhoda will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, kindly consider making a contribution in Rhoda’s memory to the Landis Homes Caring Fund, 1001 E. Oregon Rd., Lititz, PA 17543.

Mary E. Herr


Mary E. Herr, 101, formerly of Paradise, passed away Wednesday, November 13, 2019 at ManorCare Health Services, Lancaster. She was born in Strasburg to the late Arthur W. and Mable R. (Welk) Harsh. Mary was married to Samuel Harlan Herr for 57 years when he died in 1996.

She was a self-employed seamstress, sewing and altering clothing. Mary enjoyed sewing, knitting and crocheting. She was an avid reader and enjoyed watching the birds and squirrels.

Mary and Harlan enjoyed many family outings to their cabin on Hennery Island on the Susquehanna River. Mary was always interested in what her many grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren were doing. She was an active member of St. John’s United Methodist Church, where she sang in the choir and enjoyed the United Methodist Women’s group.

Mary is survived by her three daughters, Dale E., wife of James W. Bowman, Ronks, Anne L., wife of John King, Bird-In-Hand, and Cheri R., wife of Glenn Reinhart, Narvon; as well as 10 grandchildren, 27 great-grandchildren and 4 great-great-grandchildren. In addition to her husband Harlan, Mary was preceded in death by their daughter, Joan M.
Leaman and sons, James L. Herr and Richard N. Herr; and her siblings, Harry W. Harsh, Dorothy Barron and Rosene Huber.

A viewing will take place 3 to 5 PM, Sunday, November 17, 2019 at Bachman Snyder Funeral Home & Crematory, 7 S. Decatur St., Strasburg, PA 17579. Interment will be private. Please omit flowers. Memorial contributions may be made to St. John’s U. M. Church, 3001 Lincoln Hwy. East, Paradise, PA 17562 or to Hospice & Community Care, P.O. Box 4125, Lancaster, PA 17604-4125.

Stephen Eugene Smoker


On Wednesday, November 13, 2019, Stephen Eugene Smoker, loving husband and father, of Paradise, PA, passed away, after a brief battle with cancer, at the age of 68. He died at home, surrounded by his family.

Stephen was born on June 17, 1951, on the family farm in Morgantown, PA, to Melvin Zook Smoker and Sadie (Stoltzfus) Smoker.  He graduated from Lancaster Mennonite High School in 1969 and completed a year at Lincoln University, Oxford, PA. He was married to Sheryl Darlene (Weaver) Smoker on February 12, 1972. They were married for 47 years. 

In 1973, Stephen founded S.E. Smoker, Inc., a successful residential/commercial General Contracting firm located in Strasburg, PA, which he would own and operate for 43 years.  He was also known for his commercial real estate development projects in Strasburg and other parts of Lancaster County. 

Stephen was proud of the many churches he built, his many professional relationships, and his charity work which included numerous missions trips, building several “House of Blessings” homes, sitting on the board of Steve Wingfield Ministries, and his sponsoring of the medical ship, Logan’s Clinic, named after his grandson. 

Stephen enjoyed riding and collecting motorcycles, golfing, and spending time wintering in University Park, Florida. He was known among friends for his stories which seemed to grow better every time he told them. 

Stephen was preceded in death by his mother, Sadie, and grandson, Logan Clark Stoltzfus, and is survived by his wife, Sheryl, his two children, Kyle Stephen Smoker (husband of Noi Liang) and Kara Ann (wife of Clark A. Stoltzfus), three grandchildren, Sierra Rachael Smoker Stiling, Madelyn Grace Stoltzfus, and Maxwell Stephen Stoltzfus, his father, Melvin, his sister, Lena, and brother, Glen. 

Visitation will be held on Monday, November 18th from 2:00-4:00 in the afternoon and again from 6:00-8:00 in the evening at Keystone Evangelical Free Church, 6 Pequea Drive, in Paradise, PA 17562. A memorial service will be held the following morning on Tuesday, November 19th at 11:00, also at Keystone Evangelical Free Church. The Rev. Steve Wingfield will be officiating. Interment will be private at the convenience of the family.  Please omit flowers.

Contributions may be sent to GPA Ministries – Logan’s Clinic, PO Box 520, Oxford PA, 19363.

Bruce Daniel Herner, III


Bruce Daniel Herner, III, 55, of Lancaster, PA, passed away on November 3, 2019 at Lancaster General Hospital surrounded by friends and family. Born in Lancaster, he was the son of Lonnie (Keeler) Barnes and the late Bruce Daniel Herner, Jr.

Bruce graduated from Conestoga Valley high school. He loved his old cars, motorcycles, his music and trying out new recipes. He was a jack of all trades and was there for anyone who needed help. Bruce will be greatly missed by his wife, family and friends.

He is survived by his wife of 32 years, Wendy; son, Jesse; siblings: Lisa Good and Chris Herner; his mother, Lonnie, and his paternal grandmother, Nora Resch.

Family and Friends will be received from 9-11 AM with a Celebration of Bruce’s Life to begin at 11 AM on Saturday, November 16, 2019 at Bachman Snyder Funeral Home & Crematory, 7 South Decatur Street, Strasburg, PA 17579. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Pennsylvania SPCA Lancaster Center, 848 S. Prince St, Lancaster, PA 17603.

Virginia M. Groff


Virginia M. Groff, 88, of Paradise Twp., passed away Monday, October 28, 2019, at Lancaster General Hospital with her family by her side. Born in Paradise Twp., she was the daughter of the late Andrew Rhea and S. Elizabeth (Porter) Brown. Virginia shared 65 years of marriage with her husband George E. Groff before he died in 2015.

She graduated from Paradise High School in 1949. In addition to being a wonderful homemaker, Virginia worked as a waitress at the former Dutch Town & Country Inn, Paradise, then she managed The Bay Window gift and sub shop in Vintage and lastly as a cafeteria lady and custodian for Pequea Valley School District

Virginia was a member of St. John’s United Methodist Church. She always cared for others and enjoyed her family, especially when her grandchildren and great-grandchildren visited. Virginia enjoyed embroidery and sewing, and cheering for Penn State, the Phillies and the Steelers.

Surviving Virginia are her five children, George E. Groff, Jr., husband of Linda (Feister) of Carlisle, Gary L. Groff, husband of Beth (Book) of Willow Street, Bonnie L. (Groff) Wanner, wife of the late C. Allen Wanner of Gap, Gerald F. Groff of Lancaster and Dennis R. Groff, husband of Sondra (Gregg) of Paradise; and her 9 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. Her sister Doris Hatz preceded Virginia in death.

Virginia’s family will receive friends for 10-11 AM, followed by a celebration of her life at 11 AM with Rev. Eugene Errickson officiating, on Saturday, November 2, 2019, at St. John’s United Methodist Church, 3001 Lincoln Highway East, Paradise, PA 17652. Private interment in the adjoining cemetery.

Please omit flowers. Kindly consider mailing a contribution in Virginia’s memory to Gordonville Fire & EMS Co., P.O. Box 23, Gordonville, PA 17529, with “Ambulance Fund” in the memo.

Lois Jane Pietropaolo

Lois Jane Pietropaolo, 93, of Lancaster, PA, passed away on October 17, 2019 at Conestoga View. Born in Altoona, PA, she was the daughter of the late Marshall and Olivette (Housemann) Lenning. She is survived by her 94-year-old husband, Americo Pietropaolo and her 6 children: Sherrie Grimes and husband, Michael Grimes, Wendy Lord and husband Linwood Lord, Bonnie Brady and husband, David Brady, Rickie Sue Kendall and husband, Richard Kendall, Tim Whitmyer and wife, Ann Whitmyer, and Ted Whitmyer. Lois leaves behind a legacy of 18 grandchildren, 23 great-grandchildren and 11 great-great-grandchildren.

“She was loved and will be missed by many.”

A Drop-In Memorial Gathering will be held from 12-4 PM on Sunday, October 20 at Bachman-Snyder Funeral Home & Crematory, 7 Decatur Street, Strasburg, PA 17579.

To leave an online condolence, please visit BachmanSnyder.com.

Barbara S. Meek

Barbara Shelpeck Meek, 86, of Strasburg Pa was welcomed into her heavenly home on Monday, September 30, 2019. Born at Germantown Hospital of Philadelphia to Paul and Helen (Chepress) Shelpuk, the doctor declared that she was the most beautiful baby ever born in that hospital!  Barbara had three beautiful sisters: Helen Highley of Glenside Pa, Doris Fisher (deceased) and Paula Maines (deceased).

Barbara was the faithful and loving wife of Harold Eugene Meek “Gene” with whom she celebrated 65 fabulous years of marriage.  Theirs was a storybook romance from start to finish and he will miss her greatly! She graduated from Olney High School in 1951, and worked at Philadelphia Electric where she made many life-long friends. Barbara was a woman of great faith which kept her going throughout the years.  She attended Baptist Temple where she met the love of her life.  It was truly Love at first sight!

In addition to her husband, Barbara is survived by her daughter Leslie, wife of Dr. David Laughlin of Felton Pa; daughter Susan, wife of Rev. Strother Gross of Temple Pa; and son David, husband of Pamela Plueddemann Meek of Cochranville Pa.  Barbara and Gene had 11 grandchildren, and 15 great grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by grandson James and great-grandson Peyton.

Barbara’s greatest gift was making every member of the extended Meek and Shelpeck families feel special. She always sent personal notes to her loved ones to let them know that they are one-of-a-kind. She was the family historian and enjoyed capturing every special moment thru the lens of her camera. More than anything, she enjoyed spending time with her husband in their Summer and Winter retreats. Burial will be held at 2PM, Saturday October 12 at Conestoga Memorial Park in Lancaster Pa. Memorial Services will be held at 11AM, Saturday, November 9, 2019 at Bachman Snyder Funeral Home, 7 S. Decatur St., Strasburg Pa. 17579.  A visitation will be held from 10AM to 11AM.