Florence Esther Weaver Keener, 92, left this earth in the early morning of August 1, 2014 while in the care of Hospice and Community Care in Mt. Joy. Florence was born in Royersford, Pa., the daughter of Jonas Abram and Emma Kolb Weaver. She was strong in body. At eight years old, she begged to milk cows like her older siblings, and when her father woke her at dawn to start milking, she quickly realized she had "made a mistake." Those strong hands grew food for her family of six, worked in and out of the home in many capacities, and could break an apple in half with a twist. She was strong in spirit, nourishing her family physically and emotionally while spending 10 years in Tanzania. She maintained grace and dignity through the loss of a daughter and husband and supported her family and friends in infinite ways through her wisdom and presence. She was strong in faith, baptized at Vincent Mennonite Church at 12, working for the church in Africa and supporting Stumptown Mennonite Church. She was active in sewing circle, producing many beautiful quilts. She prayed daily for her family and friends and read through the Bible 12 times in her later years.
Florence was preceded in death by her husband, Robert Gish Keener (1992) and daughter, Deborah Sue Keener (1954). She was the last surviving child of six children: Grace Elva Weaver, Harold Kolb Weaver, Kathryn Marie Ehst, Paul Willard Weaver, and Gerald Edwin Weaver. She is survived by her children; Martha Jane Keener (married to Michael Eck), Gerry Keener (married to Donna Kennel Keener), Dennis Keener (married to Debbie Keener) and Jay Keener (married to Cheryl Weber), and five grandchildren: Robert McGee (married to Lauren McGee), Lindsay Keener, Claire Keener, Madeline Weber Keener, and Elinor Weber Keener. She is also survived by two great-grandchildren, Kylie Elle and Brinnley Mariah McGee.
Florence's good humor and unconditional acceptance of all will be greatly missed, yet we are enriched by her life. Memorial services will be held at Stumptown Mennonite Church on Friday, August 8. Visitation will begin at 2 p.m., followed by a service at 3. Following the service, all are welcome to attend a time of fellowship, especially those who cannot attend the service. The family would like to thank those who visited Florence, brought her food, and took her to appointments in her last months. Special thanks to the staff of Hospice and Community Care. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Hospice and Community Care of Lancaster County and Mennonite Central Committee.
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