Who among us ever lived in homes without electricity or indoor plumbing? Louise Reep did. She also spent her early education in one-room schoolhouses.
Louise has fond memories of those days, first in rural Snyder County, then Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. She and her eight siblings were raised by her mother in the waning days of the Great Depression. There were those summers picking and canning beans, gathering cherries for her mother’s pie-making. Then there was the 4-H club project of making skirts out of feedbags. At Christmas, her mother made a cereal bar out of rice krispies, peanuts and syrup. (“We called it candy,” Louise notes.) A single present (such as a doll or teddy bear) under the Christmas tree sufficed for Louise and her younger sister. Frequent snows beckoned the kids outdoor to sled downhill on cardboard.
Louise and Jim met their sophomore year in high school and got married six months after graduation. Louise became a Navy wife, setting up her first house in Puerto Rico. Mother of three boys and a girl, she made moves with Jim to Pittsburgh, San Diego, and finally to DC where Jim worked first for the Chief of Naval Operations (6 months), then for Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (4 years).
The couple lived in suburban Maryland for 30 years. When the kids came of age, Louise hung up her apron and got an associate degree in accounting. After a stint as a sales clerk with Drug Fair, she was a bookkeeper for the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society for 15 years. At the Navy Marine Yard office, Louse took the Navy Marine Corps Relief Society financial system from manual to computerized. (Don’t you know, those books were kept perfect!)
Jim retired in 1978 and Louise in 2000 and the two moved to Roanoke in 2001where son David and his family were living. Fortunate for us, because Louise and Jim found their home church at Trinity. As treasurer, Louise and Bunny Warme, became co-treasurers and computerized our financial system. She served as Council President during a transition time. She has been an active volunteer serving in a variety of roles through all of her years as a member.
Above all, Louise loves her Lord and lives her faith. She is one of those who will hear those words at the gates of heaven, “Well done, my good and faithful servant!”