Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sunday Obituary - Goldie Agatha (Myers) Bonnell Justice

Goldie Agatha Myers Rhinehart, about 1929

Mrs. Elmer Justice
     Mrs. Goldie A. Bonnell Justice, 68, wife of Elmer Justice, former resident of 416 W. Main St., who for several years had been living in Cambridge, died Tuesday in Guernsey Memorial Hospital, Cambridge, after a long illness.
     She was the daughter if Andrew and Emeline (Duncan) Meyers [sp], and a native of Waynesboro, Pa.  Surviving are her husband; three sons, William Rhinehart of Cambridge, Eugene Rhinehart of Las Vegas, Nevada, Donald Rhinehart of Newark and a step-son, Robert Justice of Willowwick; four daughters, Mrs. Florence Davis, Mrs. Esther Gibson and Mrs. Patricia Kennon of Newark, Mrs. Evelyn [Ethelyn] Rowland of Hamilton; also 14 grandchildren; one great-grandchild; two brothers, Ensil Meyers of Newark and George Meyers of Moundsville, WVa; one sister, Mrs. Anna Crawford of Baltimore, Md.  Three brothers and seven sisters are deceased.
     Services will be held at 1 pm Friday in a funeral home in Cambridge with the Rev. Fred Lemasters officiating and burial will be in Northwood Cemetery.  Friends may call at the funeral home." Newark Ohio Advocate,

From Tiffany:  A little more information about this lovely woman, who happens to be my great-grandmother:  She was born 5 Dec 1893 in Big Tree, Greene County, Pennsylvania to Andrew and Emaline (Duncan) Myers, the 10th of 13 children.  Her father, Andrew, had served in the Civil War and was not in good health by the time she was born.  He ended up passing away on 29 Apr 1908 in Cameron, Marshall County, West Virginia, after lingering from a stroke for some time.  They were extremely poor, possibly living in a shack-like home near the railroad.  Her mother couldn't even afford to have a doctor attend to her father.  She finally had one come, and he told her that he'd had a stroke and the end would come.  It took months.  The boys all worked for the railroad, and the girls married young.  The military pension helped a little, but once the children turned 16, their mother lost their portion of the pension.

Her family moved to Moundsville in Marshall County, and at the age of 16 she found herself pregnant with her first child, Florence L. Hagerman, who was born 28 Aug 1910.  She married the father, Joseph Hagerman, on January 1, 1910 in Moundsville, but was living at home with her mother in the 1910 Census.  They were divorced at some point and on June 28, 1913, she married Ernest Lawrence Rhinehart in Cambridge, Guernsey County, Ohio.  She gave birth to another daughter, Esther, on 9 Oct 1913, but called her Esther Hagerman.  Ethlyn Rhinehart was born 9 Aug 1916, William Joseph on 19 Aug 1917.

In 1920, Goldie was living separately from Ernest, he was living at his parents' home with Ethlyn and William, and she was 8 months pregnant with Eugene Victor Rhinehart, who was born 22 Jun 1920.  Eugene was later told by his sister, Ethel (Ethlyn), that his mother had had an affair with a salesman named George Swick (Zwick?), and that Eugene was his child, not Ernest's.  Supposedly, so were the next two children, Donald Leo, born 28 Feb 1924, and Patricia Mae, born 16 May 1927, although they were given the Rhinehart surname.  Goldie and Ernest eventually divorced.

Goldie later married someone with the surname of Graham, which is her last name in the 1930 Census.  There is a family story that one of her husband's put her children in an orphanage, or told her she needed to choose between the children and him.  The children stayed.  I will say here that from all accounts, while she may have had her flaws, she was a very loving mother and her children stayed close to her, emotionally, if not geographically, their whole lives.

Goldie later married Erville Ray Bonnell, known as Butch.  He was a butcher, and my grandpa, Gene (Eugene), loved him very much and would get up early in the morning to go work with him.  I'm told they were very close.  Butch got sick and Goldie moved him to a different location for health reasons.  She worked for many years at the Cambridge Glass Company, etching the Rosepoint design into plates, teacups, goblets, etc.  While Butch was sick she worked at a hospital.  After he died, she later married Elmer Justice.  From family interviews, I've learned that he was not very nice to Goldie, putting her down, saying unkind things.  Goldie died May 8, 1962 in Cambridge.  

From interviewing my grandma, Eva Collier Rhinehart Pendleton (Eugene's wife), and Goldie's daughter, Pat (Patricia), I learned that Goldie was a very warm, kind lady with a wonderful sense of humor.  She was devoted to her children, joined several churches - from the Methodists to the Pentecostals, she loved to have her family around her - they often had Sunday dinners, and I have pictures of her and her family sitting on the front porch.  She was close to her siblings, as well.  My grandma remembers a get-together with the family where they were all laughing and telling jokes and seemed like a really fun group of people.

Goldie with her grandson, Stanley Dale Gibson.  Behind her are her daughters, Esther and either Florence or Patricia (can't tell which)

Goldie and "Butch" Bonnell

Goldie (in truck) with Patricia (holding kitten), Donald (holding dog), and Eugene
Goldie and Butch

Goldie and Butch

Goldie, Florence, Ethel, and Esther


1 comment:

  1. Its really cool that you have so many photos! Very interesting woman and what a life story! I think its awesome, good job Tiff! Sometime I need your help to get me started on my history, you are the master.