Norma Lucille Kraps, 89, passed away peacefully Saturday, January 12, 2013, at Keystone Pointe Health and Rehabilitation Center, LaGrange, following a lengthy illness. She was born June 2, 1923 in Litchfield, daughter of the late Edward and Viola (nee Pfeiffer) Werner. She was a 1940 graduate of Sullivan High School and attended the Wooster College of Business.
During WWII, she was a secretary at the Wright Patterson Air Force Base and moved to Elyria in 1946, where she was a secretary at the Chamber of Commerce and Ohio Edison. She was a former member of the Elyria Women’s Office Workers Group and the Elyria Guys and Dolls. She wed her husband, William, in 1956 and they lived most of their lives in the Grafton area.
Norma will be remembered as an avid birdwatcher who was well known throughout the surrounding counties. She was a core member of the Black River Audubon Society, meeting originally as a small group at Ely Woods in the early 1950s. She held many positions on their board and coordinated many activities and trips. She was a beloved mentor to many beginning birdwatchers and was an advocate for preservation of wildlife and birding habitats. She enjoyed the company of her Audubon friends and traveling with her husband across the U.S., adding bird species to her birding life-list which dates back to 1936. She was a volunteer at the Metro Parks Carlisle Visitor Center and a nature guide for area schools’ 5th grade camps. She enjoyed journaling and writing to friends. Norma was also a 50+ year member of the LaPorte United Methodist Church, where she served as Sunday School teacher and board member. She was also a supporter of Boy Scouts of America as a Cub Scout and Webelo leader for many years.
Norma is survived by sons, Jeffrey (Linda) of Grafton and Bart (Phyllis) of Penfield Township; her grandchildren, Gregory Kraps of Grafton and Laura Kraps of Elyria; sister, Leah Grieve of Elyria; and many nieces and nephews. Along with her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 46 years, William R.; her son, Stuart L.; sister, Allene Lance and other close family and friends.
A memorial Service will be 11 A.M., Saturday, February 2, 2013, at LaPorte United Methodist Church, 2071 Grafton Rd., Elyria, with Reverend Jonathan McCleery officiating.
Memorial contributions may be made to Black River Audubon Society, P.O. Box 33, Elyria, OH 44036; LaPorte United Methodist Church; or the Alzheimer’s Association, P.O. Box 74924, Cleveland, OH 44194. Burial will be in Butternut Ridge Cemetery, in Carlisle Township.