Norma J. Vanderboegh, 93, of Marion, Ohio, entered into the glory of Heaven on March 16, 2023, after a 14-month long battle with cancer.
Norma was born to Lewis and Nettie (Reynolds) Nace on August 28, 1929, in Berrien Springs, Michigan. In 1947, she graduated from Berrien Springs High School. As Marion residents touched by her life know, she made positive impacts wherever she served. This was evident in her early days when the family for whom she worked as a nanny offered to pay for her complete education to Michigan State University. Instead, she worked at Clark Equipment Company in Berrien Springs and Jackson, Michigan to help contribute to her family. Later she was employed by Yale & Towne Company in Berrien Springs, leaving in 1954 to raise her children.
Always with a focus on her family, when her daughter Meri was born in 1960 with a disability, she began volunteering at MARCA School and with MARCA Council beginning in the late 1960’s. In 1975, she accepted the Executive Director position of the newly founded Residential Home Association of Marion (RHAM). Until her retirement in 2000, she was privileged to oversee the establishment of many homes and apartments for residents of Marion who needed community support services. Norma never stopped seeking the best for those whom she served. She also volunteered for OhioHealth Hospice for fourteen years during her retirement.
Now with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ whom she accepted as a young girl, her walk continued to grow toward a heavenly mindset. It was a joy for her to attend and serve in various capacities at Fite Memorial Baptist Church for 65 years. She loved her pastor, David Carlyle, his wife Jan, and fellow church members. Her faith walk was genuine. Norma said her last year of life superseded the other 92 in that she was able to give and receive God’s love in many ways.
Norma is survived by her son, Dwight (Cheryl) Vanderboegh of Wilson, North Carolina; daughter, Teri (Jim) Lehman of Lexington, Ohio; and daughter-in-law, Rose Vanderboegh, of Trussville, Alabama.
In addition, her pride and joy were her eight grandchildren: Matthew (Nicole) Vanderboegh, Hannah (Brandon) VanSlambrouck, Zoe (Zack) Hooper, Sarah (Stephen) Racite, Rachel (Phil) Bennicoff, Ryan (Laci) Vanderboegh, Caitlin Lehman, and Joshua Lehman.
Her legacy is also left to her sixteen great-grandchildren: Mason, Gabriel, Olivia, Arabella, Liam, Jennifer, Stephen, Rebekah, Joel, Micah, Alissa, Caleb, Caede, Blaine, Brynn, and Elin. She is also survived by a sister, Nancy Ganong of Trenton, Florida; a sister-in-law, Marilyn Nace of North Liberty, Indiana; numerous nieces, nephews, and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, a son, Mike; Meri Kay, the daughter who changed the direction of her life; six brothers: Lewis Jr., Roy, Aaron, Robert, Bill, and Jim Nace; and one sister, Linda Roberts.
In her effects on a handwritten card was this statement: “God cannot bless disobedience or compromise. If I want His best, I will go where He leads me, and follow – forsaking all that does not bring glory and honor to Christ.” This sums up her life quite well.
Friends and family may come to honor Norma’s life at a graveside service on Friday March 24, 2023, at 11:30 a.m. at Marion Cemetery, officiated by Reverend David Carlyle. Burial will be in the Marion Cemetery next to Meri who impacted the Vanderboegh family more than she ever knew. All are also welcome to attend a reception following the service at Fite Memorial Baptist Church at 497 Davids Street in Marion. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Fite Memorial Baptist Church for missions outreach or to OhioHealth Hospice.
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