Scottdale teacher, school board member believed in service to community
Frank Stoner Jr. believed in serving his community, whether it was from a World War II bomber, a classroom or a seat on a school board.
“He took his responsibilities to heart,” said his sister, Virginia Hill. “He did what he was supposed to do. He was just a very honest, loving man.”
Frank Stoner Jr. of Scottdale died Friday, Nov. 22, 2019, at Walnut Ridge Memory Care in Greensburg. He was 95.
He was born Oct. 3, 1924, in East Huntingdon to the late Frank Null and Jessie May Tedrow Stoner.
Growing up on a farm, his father taught him how to work and his mother taught him how to be a gentleman.
He always had a passion for agriculture. As a young man, he was part of 4-H, growing strawberries and raising a cow for competitions.
He studied agricultural education at Penn State University and educational communications at the University of Pittsburgh.
After college, he served in the Navy Air Corps during World War II. He was an aviation ordinance man and a bow gunner on a bomber.
“He did love his country, very, very much,” his sister said.
He spent most of his career teaching agriculture and science in the Elizabeth Forward School District.
He loved his wife, Geraldine Weaver Stoner. He would often sing her favorite song, “I Love You Truly.”
The Stoners enjoyed golfing and would take golf outings together.
Mr. Stoner coached the Elizabeth Forward golf team.
He served on the school board of the Scottdale Joint School System, helping shepherd the system as it merged with the East Huntingdon School District to become Southmoreland School District.
“He got them through all that,” his sister said.
Between Scottdale and Southmoreland, he served 18 years on the school board, 10 of them as president.
He also served on the Westmoreland County Intermediate Unit board, the Pennsylvania School Boards Association and the Southwest Regional Tax Bureau.
He enjoyed gardening.
“He loved his flowers,” his sister said. “He used to grow dinner plate dahlias; they were huge.”
Mr. Stoner was preceded in death by his wife, Geraldine Weaver Stoner.
He is survived by his sister, Virginia Hill, and husband David Hill, of Bedford, Mass.; and many nieces and nephews.
A remembrance gathering and memorial service is being planned for spring, with a date to be announced. Arrangements are in the care of Graft-Jacquillard Funeral and Cremation Services, Scottdale.
Memorial contributions may be made to Shriners Hospitals For Children, Attention: Office of Development, 2900 N. Rocky Point Drive, Tampa, FL, 33607, or Three Rivers Hospice, 2500 Mosside Blvd., Monroeville, PA, 15146.
Jacob Tierney is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jacob at 724-836-6646, [email protected] or via Twitter .