Edna Fay Strickland, 98, of Newport, Pa., returned to God her Maker on Monday, Jan 14, surrounded by her loved ones who absolutely adored her strength, beauty, directness, and abiding joy for life. She was 21 days shy of her 99th Birthday.
Edna was known by many names: Daughter, beloved Sister, Wife, Mom, Grandma, Great-Grandma, Aunt, Neighbor, Friend, and follower of Jesus. It was that last identity which seasoned Edna’s heart and life toward unwavering faith amidst trial, in sacrificial service to others, and as a bearer of hope.
Born to George and Hattie Rudy in Rudytown, Cumberland County, Edna was the second youngest and last surviving of 11 children. Edna was married to Elwood T. Strickland until his untimely death 54 years ago. Surviving are three children, Karen Miller and Chylene Wright, both of Newport, and Kory Strickland of Carlisle; grand children, Troy Howell of Williamsport, Pam Beam of Newport, Kurt Howell of Millerstown, Colleen Wright of Newport, Chris Wright of Newport, Cathy Wright of Newport, Monica Strickland of Carlisle and Arianna Strickland of Carlisle; 14 great-grandchildren; 16 great-great-grandchildren; and a host of others who called her “friend.” She was retired from Newport School District where she worked for several decades in the cafeteria.
Edna was one of the lowest-maintenance individuals the world has ever known, reveling in the little things of life, and in giving life-perspective to anyone who took the time to tarry with her. She rejoiced in being with her family, even if she didn’t always agree with them. She loved babies, a good laugh, taking long walks, and listening to the Gaither Vocal Band. Edna had a lifelong love of gardening, sneaking to her flowerbeds out back long after she was barred by family from doing so. Edna adored Jesus and the faith community at Hilltop Christian Church. She was unrelenting in sending notes and cards, and in visiting those alone or in need. In later years, she was very blessed by unexpected visitors to her home.
Edna’s smile was radiant and her wit, amazing. Her life added great value to so many. A Service of Death and Resurrection will be held at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Jan. 22, at the David M. Myers Funeral Home, Newport, Pa. Visitation is from 9 to 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, life celebration donations may be directed to pay off the building at Hilltop Christian Church, 721 Hill Crest Drive, Newport, 17074. Edna’s family is deeply grateful for those who were present for her during 24 days of Hospice.