Barbara Joan LeFever, 83, of Piqua, transitioned quietly on Saturday, March 28, 2020, at Shelby Skilled Nursing & Rehabilitation Facility, Sidney. She was born September 25, 1936, the only child of Laurence A. and Lillian Bess (George) Fadely of Milford Center, Ohio. After completing third grade in Milford, the family moved to Piqua, where she graduated in the Class of 1954. Marriage and children soon followed, making motherhood a career for many years. When those responsibilities lessened, she joined the workforce, ultimately retiring from Quality Forms of Piqua in 1998.
Barbara was longtime member of Good Shepherd United Presbyterian Church in Piqua, where she was a member and soloist of the choir. An annual solo rendition of Ave Maria was the highlight of that experience. Barbara’s appreciation for song made it easy to immerse herself in the world of barbershop music, with Fritz being a member of the Melody Men’s Chorus, based in Sidney. The endeavor required a fair amount of time and effort, but was a labor of love for both of them. Until health issues intervened, their other great joy was spending time at Myrtle Beach, S.C., enjoying the ocean, sun and sand, and of course the fine dining available there. Barbara loved to cook and bake, hosting many family get-togethers and providing holiday cookies and candies for all, especially enjoying her many grandchildren. She was an avid collector of all things lighthouse. A progressive deterioration of her cognitive abilities, coupled with Fritz’s passing in 2017, ended their 29 years together, but the sorrow of her passing is tempered by the good memories left behind.
In addition to her parents, Barbara was predeceased by her husband, Loren ‘Fritz’ LeFever; former husband Dale Smith; a son, Larry Smith; and Buster, the abandoned pup that shared their home for 17 years. She is survived by sons Doug (Susan) Smith, Steve Smith, all of Piqua, Andy (Stacy) Smith of Covington; and daughter, Lori (Kent) Benitt of Warren, MN. She will also be missed by step-children Curt (Lou Ann) LeFever of Athol, MA, Chris (Teresa) LeFever of Sidney, Brian LeFever of Troy, Gingia (Paul Jr.) DeVault of Sidney; a multitude of grandchildren; many cousins and extended family in Milford Center and Union County; her rescue dog Rusty; and her best friend since high school, Marge Jessup of Celina.
A private visitation and service for the family will be held Wednesday, April 1, at Moore Funeral Home, Covington. Burial will follow in Miami Memorial Park. A celebration of her life will be held at a later date to be announced, when the current crisis allows. Memorial contributions may be made to Heartland Hospice. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.moorefh.com.