Lifetime area resident, Bertha Irene Schmeltz, formerly of 9216 Suter Rd. died of natural causes at 4:20 p.m. on Wednesday, July 11, 2001, in Walnut Creek Care Center where she had lived since 1999. Bertha would have celebrated her 86th birthday in two weeks. Born in Teegarden, Ind., on July 25, 1915, Bertha was the daughter of George Washington and Ida May Weaver Thomas. She attended Teegarden schools. On December 31, 1937, in South Bend, she married Cecil Paul Lewis Schmeltz. A homemaker….and a good one. Bertha was an outdoor person. She enjoyed gardening, vegetables and flowers. She canned the fruits of her garden and was an excellent cook. She liked to crochet and sew and made much of the family’s clothing. A former member of the Teegarden Brethren Church, Bertha attended the Pretty Lake United Methodist Church. A 25-year member of the Women of the Moose, #1355, she was a Past Chairperson of Moose Heart and was an Escort to the Academy of Friendship in the Moose. Bertha is survived by Cecil, her spouse of 63 years, and their four daughters. The daughters are Sharon L. and Gale Lowry and Donna K. and Donald Wood, all of Walkerton: Margaret M. Birk and Gloria I. and Charles Krieg all of Plymouth. Eighteen grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren together with Bernice Odaffer, a sister-in-law of Plymouth, also survive. Bertha was preceded in death by her parents, two brothers: Willard and Clarence Thomas and Nancy Mangun, a sister. An infant son, Paul Lamar Schmeltz and an infant grandson, David Louis Wood, have also died. Visitation with her family to celebrate Bertha’s life will be from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday, July 13, 2001, in the Johnson-Danielson Funeral Home, 1100 N. Michigan St., Plymouth. A special Moose Ladies Ritual will be held at 8 p.m. following visitation. Funeral services for Bertha will be at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 14, 2001, in the funeral home. The Rev. Charles Krieg, Bertha’s son-in-law and pastor of the Pretty Lake United Methodist Church, will officiate. Burial will be in Woodlawn Cemetery, Walkerton. Memorial gifts in Bertha’s name may be made to Moose Heart or a charity of the donor’s choice.