Marian Yoder Payne

Marian Yoder Payne

On Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017, Marian Yoder Payne passed away peacefully in her home in Richmond, Va., one week shy of her 84th birthday. She was born to Saloma (Peachey) Yoder and Jacob P. Yoder in Belleville. Marian and her loving husband, James, had just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on June 1, 2017.

Marian had a zest for life, and a gift for making people feel special and welcomed. James was very supportive of Marian as she returned to Penn State University to complete her B.S. in elementary education, graduating with distinction, while they raised their five grade school children. She taught third grade at J.W. Kline Elementary School, and completed two master’s of education degrees in reading and in administration at Shippensburg State University. She then became the Shippensburg School District reading supervisor.

Born into a farmhouse without electricity, she embraced technology as it developed. She used the computer to make a yearly family calendar, and regularly followed her grandchildren and extended family on Facebook. She was often the first to comment on her grandchildren’s posts. She especially enjoyed connecting with former students on Facebook, who often thanked her for the impact she had on their lives.

In addition to her husband, Marian is survived by her five children — Barbara Swan and husband David, J. David Payne and wife Letitia, Wanita Hlavaty and husband Lee, Wanda Ford and husband David, and Beth Payne. She dearly loved her nine grandchildren — Tim (and fiancee Kristina Tikal), Adam, and Danielle Payne; Collin (and wife Jayna Rust) and Chris Swan; Mae, Heather, and Austin Hlavaty; and Katherine (and fiancee Kathryn Hokamp) Ford.

Giving even in death, Marian donated her body to the Virginia State Anatomical Program. A Celebration of Life will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017 at the Summerhill at Stony Point Retirement Community lodge. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Payne Family Endowed Scholarship at the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding, Eastern Mennonite University.