Rosemary A. Chestnut 1930-2024 | News, sports, jobs

NORTH LIMA – Rosemary A. Chestnut, 93, died Monday afternoon, April 22, 2024, at Assumption Village Nursing Home. She was born Nov. 13, 1930, in Youngstown, a daughter of Aloysius and Anna Rokita Makara.

When Rosemary graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School in 1950, Rosemary often talked about the crazy things her class did when she was a senior, such as rolling the stairwells of WWHS with toilet paper and hiding school supplies from their teachers. In 1952, she married Paul Chestnut and embarked on an adventure that would see her live in Newport, Rhode Island; Youngstown; Hubbard; Loudon, Tenn.; back to Hubbard; and finally North Lima. Rosemary and Paul traveled to Hawaii, Haiti, Aruba, Mexico and along the East Coast. Paul died on January 5, 2016, and Rosemary swore he died because he didn’t listen to her many admonitions about eating well (“Put down that capicola!”) and exercising. Her family expects Rosemary to continue her wise advice upon their heavenly reunion, much to Paul’s chagrin.

Rosemary’s father was a professional baker and her mother an accomplished seamstress, two talents she inherited. Rosemary loved her sweets and was affectionately known to her grandchildren as “Grandma Donuts” because every Saturday, after getting her hair cut at the local hair salon, she would bring a dozen donuts to share with them. She made cinnamon rolls, pies, cakes, cookies, and the occasional fruit-based dessert, which she considered “healthy.” She also always had treats for her many “granddogs” and did not hesitate to share a sweet breakfast sandwich or Pop Tart with them.

Despite her love for all things sugar (or maybe because of it), she also lived a life of good balance because she also enjoyed exercising! Her children watched her do calisthenics with Paige Palmer and Jack LaLanne, “The Original Workout” with Jane Fonda or “Sweatin’ to the Oldies” with Richard Simmons. Her fitness was legendary and she could run laps around most people until she was in her late seventies. Rosemary and her sister Barbara grew up dancing and spent many hours practicing tap, ballet and jazz. Rumor has it that they were offered auditions with the Rockettes, but their mother said there was no question of two young girls going to New York City, which was seen as a den of chaos and debauchery. However, Rosemary carried her love of dance into adulthood. After a week of hard work, she and Paul would use the weekend to join their large circle of friends on the dance floor. Paul complained that Rosemary wouldn’t let him take the lead, but she felt the lead should be taken by the better dancer, so she won that battle. Polkas, disco, ballroom… you name it, they were on the floor at every opportunity and they were fun to watch!

Her love of sewing, especially quilting, was reflected in the many handmade treasures that her family still holds dear. Her children and grandchildren were the lucky recipients of many beautiful quilts, with themes such as Christmas, nature, films such as Star Wars and Cars, teddy bears and other interests. Ever the supportive mother and grandmother, Rosemary showed up for piano recitals, spelling bees, sporting events and everything else her children and grandchildren did. She never got tired of asking her grandsons, “Are you still playing basketball?” or offering advice on romance with zingers like “It’s better to play the field!” While her memory faded due to Alzheimer’s disease, her humor remained razor sharp. When the caring Assumption staff asked, “How are you feeling today?”, she put on a sarcastic smile and replied, “With my hands.” A song was never far from her lips, with classics like ‘Night Fever’ (Yes, the Bee Gees were a favourite!), ‘A Bicycle Built for Two’ and ‘Roll Out the Barrel’ on her list of favorite songs.

Now for the rest of the obituary, let’s discuss the other facts. Rosemary was a member of St. Patrick Roman Catholic Church in Hubbard and St. Thomas the Apostle Roman Catholic Church in Lenoir City, Tennessee. She was a press assistant at Sherwin Williams and then at US Can for thirty years, retiring in 1995.

She is survived by a son, Mark Chestnut of Grass Lake, Mich.; two daughters, Mary Ann Johnson of Hubbard, and Sandi Bramblett and her husband, Matt of Atlanta, Georgia; former son-in-law, Jim Dripps of Hubbard; a sister, Barbara Fullerman of Boardman; five grandchildren, Angela (Kim), Matthew, Brittany (Frank), Zachary and Nicholas; as well as four great-grandchildren, Kevin, Claire, Trent and Korey.

Rosemary was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Paul; two sisters, Irene Hedberg and Theresa Kuzman; two brothers, Albert Makara and Edward Makara; and a grandson, Michael Dripps.

Family and friends may call at St. Patrick Roman Catholic Church in Hubbard on Tuesday, May 7, 2024 from 11 a.m. to noon. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at noon with the Rev. Michael Swierz officiating.

Rosemary’s final resting place will be Holy Cross Cemetery in Hermitage, Pennsylvania, next to her beloved husband Paul, who will no doubt wonder why it took so long to get there.

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