The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Daily Item Obituaries

January 6, 2014

Dr. Howard B. Powell, 76, Bloomsburg

— BLOOMSBURG — Dr. Howard Benjamin Powell, 76, of Bloomsburg, died unexpectedly on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 5, 2014, in the Geisinger Medical Center emergency room, Danville.

He was born May 17, 1937, in East Stroudsburg, the middle son of the late David W. and Margaret (Shively) Powell.  

Ben moved to Bloomsburg in 1966 and taught American history at Bloomsburg University from 1966 to 1996.

He was a member of the American Historical Association and the Pennsylvania Historical Association. In 1978, Penn State Press published Philadelphia’s First Fuel Crisis: Jacob Cist and the Developing Market for Pennsylvania Anthracite. He also wrote a second book about two country music musicians Bob and Dean McNett. From 1977 to 1982, he edited Pennsylvania History, the quarterly journal of the Pennsylvania Historical Association. He did research for the Pennsylvania Anthracite Museum and served on the research council of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. He wrote history articles and reviewed books for Pennsylvania History. His wife, Edna, helped him work by typing, proofreading, and advising him with this work.  

Ben coached AYSO soccer for 13 years while his son played on his team. He assisted with fundraising for Big Brothers/Big Sisters (BB/BS) and the Mental Health Association (MHA) for more than 25 years. Ben, Edna and Stephen loved camping and spent many family vacations during the summer visiting many of the scenic areas of the United States. During the winter Ben was also an avid skier.

He was a member of the Saint Matthew Lutheran Church, where he served as chairman of the evangelism committee, the Men’s Prayer Breakfast, taught Sunday school, and sang in the senior choir.

Ben and his wife enjoyed all kinds of music from traditional gospel music to country music. They also liked the music performed at Bloomsburg University as well as music in the park provided by the town of Bloomsburg. With his son and grandchildren, he enjoyed collecting model trains. He and his wife were avid Bloomsburg University football and basketball fans.   

He is survived by his loving wife of 50 years, the former Edna Keefer; one son and daughter-in-law, Stephen M. and Loretta Powell, of Binghamton, N.Y.: three grandchildren, Alex, Ben, and Henry Powell; and one brother, Ralph W. Powell of Fredricksburg, Va.  

Ben was preceded in death by his brother, David W. Powell.  

A time of visitation for family and friends will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Allen Funeral Home, Inc., 745 Market at Eighth Street, Bloomsburg. A funeral service will be conducted at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in St. Matthew Lutheran Church, 123 N. Market St., Bloomsburg, with his pastor, the Rev. Dr. Joel L. Zeiders, officiating.  

Private graveside services will immediately follow a luncheon.

Memorial contributions in Ben’s memory are suggested to St. Matthew Lutheran Church, 123 N. Market St., Bloomsburg or the Mental Health Association, 37 W. Main St., Suite 202, Bloomsburg, PA 17815.  

Friends and family wishing to send a memorial gift share a personal memory or offer condolences to the family, a Memorial Tribute Page in Ben’s honor and a Sympathy Store are available at


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Daily Item Obituaries
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  • Margaret G. Puderbaugh, 97, Danville

    DANVILLE — Margaret G. Puderbaugh, 97, of Danville, passed away Wednesday, April 16, 2014, at Emmanuel Center, Danville, where she had been living for two years.

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  • David Fendt, 52, Stansbury Park, Utah

    STANSBURY PARK, Utah — David Fendt, 52, of Stansbury Park, formerly of Sunbury, Pa., passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, April 12, 2014, in Gonzales, La.

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  • Arthur L. Shaffer, 73, Mount Pleasant Mills

    MOUNT PLEASANT MILLS — Arthur L. Shaffer, 73, of Mount Pleasant Mills, entered into rest on Wednesday, April 16, 2014, at Geisinger Medical Center, Danville.

    April 17, 2014

  • Marian C. Schlegel, 85, Millmont

    MILLMONT — Marian C. Schlegel, 85, formerly of Selinsgrove, entered into rest at 4:26 p.m. Thursday, April 17, 2014, at Rolling Hills Manor, Millmont, where she had been a resident since 2008.

    April 17, 2014

  • Manford “Mac” Stailey, 91, McAlisterville

    McALISTERVILLE — Manford “Mac” Stailey, 91, of McAlisterville, passed away Saturday, April 12, 2014, at Brookline, Mifflintown.

    April 17, 2014

  • Shirley M. Doebler, 89, Sunbury

    SUNBURY — Shirley M. Doebler, 89, passed away Thursday, April 17, 2014, at the Geisinger Medical Center, Danville.

    April 17, 2014

  • sandrawise.jpg Sandra L. Wise, 70, Milton

    MILTON — Sandra L. Wise, 70, of Milton, passed away Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at the Watsontown Health & Rehabilitation Center.

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  • wagner.jpg Richard R. “Bimbo” Wagner, 74, Middleburg

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  • Aleah M. Wetzel, infant, Millmont

    MILLMONT — Aleah Marie Wetzel, infant daughter of Bradley H. Wetzel, of Mifflinburg, and Heather A. Hause, of Millmont, was stillborn on Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at Evangelical Community Hospital, Lewisburg.

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The Daily Marquee
Funeral Arrangements
  • Friday, April 18, 2014

    MONTAGUE, RUTH ANN, 82, of Danville. Memorial service at 1 p.m. Saturday in Trinity Lutheran Church, 215 E. Market St., Danville. Burial in Fairview Cemetery, Danville. Visneski Funeral Home, Danville.

    RUTH, MARGUARITE J., 94, of Selinsgrove. Visitation from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Saturday in Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1125 Mahoning St., Milton, followed by funeral at 11. Burial in Harmony Cemetery, Milton. Dale E. Ranck Funeral Service, Milton.

    SMITH, PAUL, 74, of Pitman. Visitation from 9:30 to 11 a.m. today in Zion Evangelical Congregational Church, Pitman, followed by funeral at 11. Burial in church cemetery. Stephen Rothermal Funeral Home, Klingerstown.

    WAGNER, RICHARD R., 74, of Middleburg. Visitation from 6 to 8 p.m. today and from 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday, followed by funeral at 11, in Hummel Funeral Home, 574 Hill St., Middleburg. Burial in Erdley’s Church Cemetery, Middleburg.

    WHITE, MARTHA L., 78, of West Milton. Visitation from 10 to 11 a.m. today in Shaw Funeral Home, 400 N. Front St., Milton, followed by funeral at 11. Burial in Uniontown Cemetery, Allenwood.

    WISE, SANDRA L., 70, of Milton. Visitation from 1 to 2 p.m. Monday in Spitler Funeral Home, 733 Broad St., Montoursville, followed by a memorial service at 2. Burial in Twin Hills Memorial Park.


    April 17, 2014