Vermona Geraldine Schwartz and her husband, Roy.
Vermona Geraldine Schwartz and her husband, Roy.
Featured resident this week at Ostrander Care & Rehab is Vermona Geraldine Schwartz, having come to live at OCR Dec. 17, 2012. She was born June 14, 1923, as the only child to Cena and Gerald Mead near Forestville.

Attendance at a country school near Cherry Grove was followed by her high school education and graduation from Wykoff High School in 1942, she was one of the members of the school's first graduating class. At that time the official school mascot became the Wycats, the name being something that Vermona always questioned.

At Cherry Grove, Vermona played second base on the women's softball team, a team that was undefeated for five years. She was well known as a base-stealer, because, according to daughter Linda, "She was short, but her legs could really go."

When she shared a house with other young ladies, she tapped into her musical talents to get out of doing household chores and other tasks. She loved playing guitar, singing, yodeling, and was talented on the accordion, piano, and organ as well.

On Oct. 10, 1953, she married Roy Schwartz, a truck driver. Two children - a son Daniel, and a daughter Gretchen (Gertie) - were born. The coupled adopted a third child, Linda, early in their marriage. Vermona and the three children managed the rural Spring Valley farm, including milking cows by hand. After moving from the farm, Vermona was a waitress at the Tamerack Café and later retired from Telex.

In Spring Valley, her musical abilities served her well for 17 years as the children's choir director at the Evangelical United Brethern Church, later the United Methodist Church after the merger.