Greensburg woman had ‘pride and purpose’
Jemima Klingensmith was proud of her family’s legacy.
Her great-grandfather, John Stouffer, fought for the Union in then Civil War.
Mrs. Klingensmith was a longtime member and onetime state president of the Daughters of Union Veterans, a group of Civil War descendants dedicated to keeping the memory of their ancestors alive.
“I think it gave her a sense of pride and purpose,” said her niece, Rebecca Dunn.
Jemima “Jemmy” Watson Klingensmith, 92, of Greensburg, died Friday, Oct. 25, 2019.
She was born July 11, 1927, in Greensburg to the late James G. and Emily Clark Watson.
“She was definitely a passionate, hardworking woman,” said her great-niece, Brittany Luczki.
Mrs. Klingensmith worked for many years at Chubb and Son Insurance, working her way up to executive secretary in a time when it was unusual for women to focus on their careers.
“She demanded respect, and she got respect,” Dunn said.
Mrs. Klingensmith was a “natural leader,” according to Dunn, a skill that served her well both in the workplace and with Daughters of Union Veterans.
Her family remembered her as kind and sociable.
She enjoyed dancing and going to horse races, where she usually had good luck.
“She could always tell which one was going to win,” Dunn said.
Mrs. Klingensmith was part of the Mission Quilt group at First Reformed United Church of Christ, where she made many quilts to donate to nursing homes, children’s homes and other places where they’d be appreciated.
Luczki is part of the family legacy as a member of Daughters of Union Veterans. She remembers travelling to group events with her aunt, and to significant Civil War sites like Gettysburg.
Klingensmith’s mother and sisters were also part of the organization, and were among the founding members of the local chapter.
She loved spending time with her nieces and nephews.
“She was a truly generous, kind soul,” Dunn said. “She was all of the things you want an aunt to be.”
Mrs. Klingensmith as preceded in death by her husband, Harold Paul Klingensmith.
A funeral service was held 11 a.m. Saturday at Kepple-Graft Funeral Home in Greensburg, followed by internment at Hillview Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to First Reformed United Church of Christ, 312 S. Maple Avenue, Greensburg, or to the American Diabetes Association, or a charity of one’s choice.
Jacob Tierney is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jacob at 724-836-6646, [email protected] or via Twitter .