Gloria Roth Slonaker, 94, of Lewisburg, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, and friend, died on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at her home.
She was born on March 11, 1926 to William and Mary (Binczak) Roth, in Pottstown. On September 5, 1948 she married Robert E. Slonaker, Jr., who preceded her in death in April 2008. Together they celebrated 59 years of married life.
Gloria was a graduate of Pottstown High School and received a Bachelor of Arts, Phi Beta Kappa from Bucknell University in 1956. This was at a time when many fewer women than men graduated from college. She accomplished this while raising her first child and working to support her husband as he pursued a Masters degree at Bucknell.
Gloria is survived by two sons, Mark A. Slonaker and his wife, Kathy, of Hollidaysburg and Paul E. Slonaker and his wife, Sharon Prizant, of Arlington, MA She is also survived by her grandson Andrew, his wife Katlynn, and their children, Dean and Jane, of Capon Bridge, WV; her grandson Adam of Hollidaysburg; and her grandson Aaron of Arlington MA.
She is also survived by two sisters, Mary Lou Smith and Barbara Eliades, and predeceased by her sister Della Erb, all of Pottstown.
Gloria was a perpetually positive person; her optimism was only matched by her love of life. Even toward the end, when her life was more constrained, she would always say that she was blessed.
Gloria’s faith was a very important part of her life and she was an involved member of Christ’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, Lewisburg. She taught Sunday School, worked on the church archives, and participated in the Stephen Ministry program.
Gloria was an accomplished artist and displayed her creativity in many ways. She studied painting and sculpture at Bucknell University. Her oil and watercolor paintings filled their home and graced many others. She loved to garden. She knitted prayer shawls for the Prayer Shawl ministry at church and created banners for the church sanctuary.
Gloria was active in the Lewisburg community at many levels. She and her husband were founding board members of the Packwood House Museum. Along with her husband, she delivered Meals-on-Wheels.
Gloria was active in the academic community. She was a longtime member of the faculty woman’s book club “The Contemporaries”. She maintained close relationships with her husband’s faculty colleagues and their families, and with his students.
But above all else, her family was important to Gloria. She was always interested in the various doings of not only her sons, grandsons, and great-grandchildren, but also her nieces and nephews and their children. She prided herself on remembering birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. If there was no event to acknowledge, her close friends might receive a ‘thinking of you’ card just to stay in touch. The family often teased Gloria, saying that she should have bought stock in Hallmark because she sent so many cards to so many people.
A graveside service was held at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 2 in the Lewisburg Cemetery with the Rev. William S. Henderson officiating. Due to current health conditions, the graveside service was for immediate family members only, but the family welcomed people to attend at a safe distance.
A memorial service will be held when health conditions permit.
In lieu of flowers please consider a contribution to the Robert E. Slonaker Jr. Memorial Fund at Bucknell University, which was established in 2009 by Gloria in memory of her husband.
The family is being assisted by Cronrath-Grenoble Funeral Home, South Second and St. Louis Streets, Lewisburg.
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