Adah Shy, loving wife and mother, proud educator, avid golfer, and bridge enthusiast passed away peacefully on Monday, June 29, 2020 following a debilitating stroke. She was born on August 7, 1920, in Portsmouth, Ohio to Anna and Floyd Saylor. Adah graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1938 and married Don Shy on November 10, 1940. She relocated her family in various Ohio cities as Don's work dictated, making wherever they landed home. She made sure her family developed an understanding of giving back, of God's love and grace, and service to community. They first joined Valley Methodist Church in Portsmouth, then transferred membership to First Methodist Church in Newark, Trinity Methodist in Portsmouth, Church of the Savior (now Crossroads United Methodist Church) in Canton, and finally to Cornerstone United Methodist Church in Portsmouth.
One of Adah's passions was teaching. It began when she was a cub scout den mother and blossomed into a profession taking on teaching responsibilities with a temporary certificate and making it official when she graduated from Ohio University in 1960. She loved working with children and always tried to find more effective methods to promote student understanding and learning. Her classrooms became learning labs filled with quiet conversation and purposeful activity. Adah taught children at Hartzler School and Cherry Valley Elementary in Newark; and William R. Day Elementary and Edgefield Elementary in Canton; and in Portsmouth at old Scioto Trail School, Lindsay, and Lincoln Elementary. She touched the lives of many children in her 26 year tenure as teacher. Adah was proud of her profession and joined the National Education Association and became a life-long member of the Ohio Education Association. She enjoyed professional membership in Delta Kappa Gamma, American Association of University Women, and Scioto County Retired Teachers Association.
Adah retired in 1981 and entered another leg of her life's journey. Focusing on her second passion, she began honing her skill as a golfer, even achieving a hole-in-one, a distinct honor. She also loved bridge and belonged to several clubs. After Don retired they bought a motorhome and became snowbirds, following good weather to various golf courses, finally settling in Clermont, Florida on a canal beside a golf course. Life was good. When Don died in 1995, Adah honored his memory by continuing their tradition. She maintained two households and played golf well into her eighties. At the age of ninety-five she was still driving her car although no family member would ride with her, and was still cutting her grass on her John Deere tractor. Even though she no longer played her favorite game, she still enjoyed watching televised golf tournaments, cheering her favorites and criticizing poorly played shots.
Adah's life slowed considerably when she sold her house and took up residence in a small apartment in Northern Kentucky. She remained active all her life. Always an advocate of daily exercise she continued to take energetic walks reluctantly using a cane when reminded to do so and adamantly refusing to use a walker when she probably should have. Adah never declined to donate to a cause. If she received a request in her mail, she sent a check regardless of what family members cautioned. Children and animals were her weaknesses. She loved music especially jazz and the genuine old classics, and played the piano to the enjoyment of her new found neighbors. Recently she decided not to wear her hearing aides saying that she could hear what she wanted to hear without them, a contrarian to the end.
And that about sums up her last chapter. It ended quietly. Adah Shy was a woman of unusual strength and willpower. She was dedicated to living a full life, held firm convictions, and loved her family. In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her son, Gary Nolan Shy, and two brothers, Raymond and Harold Saylor. She is survived by a daughter, Kay (Jerry) Freeman and a granddaughter, Elizabeth Deitchel. Both will miss her terribly. So raise a glass of wine and share this parting blessing honoring her Celtic heritage: “May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, the rain fall softly upon you field, and may God hold you in the palm of his hand.” Love until we meet again.
A private graveside service will be held for the family at Memorial Burial Park. Memorial donations may be made to St. Jude's Childrens Research Hospital, Sierra's Haven for New and Used Pets, and Hospice Care of St. Elizabeth.