Edna Giese Wonderly, 96, Black Mountain, N.C., formerly of Oakland, passed away on Dec. 31, 2020.
Born on July 7, 1924, on a homestead in Campbell County, South Dakota, she was a daughter of the late Friedrich and Christina (Fehr) Giese, both German immigrants from Russia.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 55 years, Daniel Earl Wonderly, Oakland, Md.; three older brothers, Henry, Carl and John Giese; and two older sisters, Emma Giese Whitman and Alwina Giese Doehle Cline.
After completing grades 1-8 in a one-room school, Edna graduated from Pollock (South Dakota) High School at age 17. She then earned a two-year teaching certificate from Northern State Teachers’ College in Aberdeen, S.D., and taught junior high school in Pollock from 1943-1945. She then enrolled in Wheaton College (Illinois) where she completed a Bachelor of Science in education in 1948 and also met her future husband. She later earned an Master of Science in education from Indiana University Fort Wayne in 1972.
She was a full-time school teacher in South Dakota (four years), Missouri (one year) and Maryland (15 years). Her last 13 years of teaching were spent with grades 6-8 at Swan Meadow (public) School in Garrett County, Maryland, which was attended primarily by Amish students.
For a number of years, she was an unofficial assistant to her husband in his career as a college biology professor in North Carolina and Indiana. In 1974, Daniel and Edna returned to his hometown of Oakland, Md., where they became active members of Faith Evangelical Free Church. Edna served in various capacities, especially teaching Sunday school, VBS and Pioneer Clubs. She was an active participant at the Mary Browning Senior Citizens’ Center in Oakland from 2005 until 2014. She then relocated to the Marjorie McCune Memorial Center in Black Mountain, N.C., where she was an independent living resident until September 2019.
Edna is survived by a daughter, Eunice Wonderly Stackhouse, and her husband, Stefan Stackhouse, Black Mountain, N.C.; a son, Philip Dwight Wonderly, and his wife, Gail, Warsaw; a grandson, Paul Wonderly, and his wife, Valerie; and four great-grandchildren, Anderson Joy, Gavin, Greyson and Quinn Wonderly.
Edna was loved by everyone who knew her for her selfless, generous and forgiving spirit and for her cheerful and grateful attitude in all circumstances. She will be greatly missed by her family and many friends. Her family would like to express appreciation for the kindness and care that Edna received from Pelican Health at Asheville during the final 16 months of her life.
Final arrangements are in the care of C & S Fredlock Funeral Home, P.A., Oakland, Md. Friends may share memories and condolences on their website at www.csfredlockfh.com. Burial will take place in the Wonderly cemetery in Oakland next to her husband, Daniel Wonderly.
A virtual memorial service is being planned for a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Faith Evangelical Free Church, 1009 Maryland Highway, Mountain Lake Park, MD 21550.