Verna B. Kness 1922-2022

BOARDMAN — Verna B. Kness, 99, longtime resident of Poland, passed away peacefully Friday, Jan. 7, 2022, at Briarfield Place.

Verna was born Nov 18, 1922, in Knoxville, Ark. the daughter of the late Vern R. and Hester Selby Brown. Verna shared stories of her years growing up on the farm and peach orchard in Western Arkansas.

Education was an important part of her life. She graduated from the College of the Ozarks in 1943, Case Western Reserve Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing in 1945 with a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing, and went on to receive her master’s degree in nursing in 1948. She pursued her career at the University Hospital of Cleveland, where she later became the head of nursing. Verna was also proud to have been a part of the Cadet Nursing Corps.

Through the years, Verna was an active member of First Presbyterian Church in Youngstown, Coitsville Presbyterian Church, and most recently, Westminster Presbyterian Church in Boardman.

Some of her church commitments included serving as a deacon, Christian education teacher, and being part of the Westminster Presbytery Committee on Ministry.

Verna was a member of the Poland community Zoning Commision. She served 20 years with the American Red Cross, 35 years with Hospice of the Valley, and also volunteered as a nurse with the Youngstown Youth Orchestra. She enjoyed visiting friends, attending Bible study programs, gardening, attending plays and musicals, and rooting for her favorite teams, the YSU Penguins and Pittsburgh Steelers.

Verna met her husband, Lew, through a beau of hers, who told Lew that if he paid him two bottles of Scotch then Lew could take her on a date. Well, on May 9, 1953, at Calvary Presbyterian Church in Cleveland, Verna Ree Brown and Lewis H. Kness were married, and enjoyed 50 years together until Lew’s passing in 2003.

Verna was a strong woman of faith, and an example and inspiration of how to live and age with humility, patience, humor, determination, integrity and grace.

Verna is survived by a son, Stephen L. Kness of New Springfield; a daughter-in-law, Amy Kness-Whirrett of Spring Hill, Tenn.; son-in-law, Larry McCloskey of The Villages, Fla.; two grandchildren, Kelly Rice and Larry McCloskey II; and four great-grandchildren.

Besides her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her daughter, Deborah McCloskey; grandson, Stephen L. Kness II; and three siblings, Bea Molinaro, Betty Davis and Selby Brown.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022, at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 119 Stadium Drive, Boardman, where family and friends may visit one hour prior to the service. The service will be live streamed at wpcboardman.com.

In lieu of flowers, contributions, in Verna’s memory may be made to Hospice of the Valley, 5190 Market St., Boardman, OH 44512; The Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley, 1300 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Youngstown, OH 44502; Case Western Reserve University Nursing School Fund, 10900 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH 44106-7035; or University of the Ozarks, 415 N. College Ave., Clarksville, AR 72830.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the Shriver-Allison-Courtley-Weller-King Funeral Home. Friends and family may view this obituary and share memories and condolences at www.shriverallisoncourtleyfuneralhome.com.

(special notice)