The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Daily Item Obituaries

April 27, 2012

Julia B. "Judy" Garman, 85, Mount Pleasant Mills

— MOUNT PLEASANT MILLS — Julia B. “Judy” Garman died peacefully on Thursday, April 26, 2012, at her home in Mount Pleasant Mills, Snyder County.

She was born Feb. 15, 1927, in the nearby town of Penns Creek, to David A. Sr.  and Erma Spangler Bilger. By 1934, Judy was the big sister to three siblings.  

Judy was active and smiling throughout her life. Early memories include walking to grade school with friends and, later, in Selinsgrove High School’s class of 1945, cheerleading, creating havoc in home economics class, driving fast cars, fighting for space at the girls’ room mirror, and stealing boyfriends.

In 1948, Judy married one of those boyfriends, George P. Garman, after completing modeling school in New York City and working there as a runway model. The couple went on to own and operate the George P. Garman Funeral Homes in Mount Pleasant Mills and Liverpool until George’s death in 1990.

Judy and George had three daughters, all of whom survive. They include Christine Lynne Garman, Selinsgrove, now president of the funeral homes; Stephanie Garman Maurer, Harrisburg, and Melanie Garman-Shaffer, Mount Pleasant Mills. Family of Christine includes daughter Kymberley L. Best, Sunbury, and her children, Olivia, Anthony, Isabella, and Joseph Best; also daughter Tiffany C. Hawn, Selinsgrove, her husband, Wade, and their children Emmerson and Jack Hawn; also Christine’s companion, William G. Hilkert. Family of Stephanie includes former husband, Thomas W. Maurer, Liverpool, and their sons, Thomas George Maurer, Harrisburg, and Seth Garman Maurer, Mechanicsburg, as well as Seth’s fiancé, Christina Fortin; daughter Kirsten Julia Maurer was a homicide victim in 2008. Family of Melanie includes her husband, Scott C. Shaffer, and their sons, Adam Grant Shaffer, Carlisle, who himself entered the funeral business, and Clay Austin Shaffer, Pittsburgh. All of Judy’s grandchildren knew her as “Bunny.”

Also surviving are Judy’s brother, David A. Bilger Jr., Mifflinburg, and his wife, Ethel; and Judy’s sister, Joan Jarrett, Camp Hill. Brother Richard Bilger died in 2006.

The family remembers Judy for her kindness and generosity, sense of fashion, love of golf (she learned to play seriously after the daughters were grown), family get-togethers, and for her amazing strength in surviving ovarian cancer. She was beautiful inside and out, always there when needed, and will be missed more than words can describe.  

Visitation is Sunday, from 7 to 9 p.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Route 35, Mount Pleasant Mills. Funeral service is Monday at 11 a.m., also at the church, with visitation from 10 a.m. until the service.  

Burial is in the adjacent cemetery.

Funeral arrangements are being handled with the deepest love and respect by Judy’s grandson, Adam Grant Shaffer, of the Hoffman-Roth Funeral Home, Carlisle, in coordination with the George P. Garman Funeral Homes, Inc., Mount Pleasant Mills.   

Memorial contributions may be made to St. John’s Lutheran Church, c/o Treasurer Edna Zechman, P.O. Box 172, Middleburg, PA 17842; or to the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet (where Kirsten Maurer studied and where Judy enjoyed attending performances), 5 N. Orange St., Suite 3, Carlisle, PA 17013-2727.

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The Daily Marquee
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