Trella Hemmerly Romine, age 97, passed away on Tuesday evening, February 19, 2013 at her home near Caledonia. She was born November 3, 1915 to David Ray and Ivaloo Sheneman Hemmerly in Marion, Ohio. She was preceded in death by her sister, Mary Louise Hemmerly Rockwell Hecker, who died in 2006.
She graduated from Harding High School in 1933 where she edited the school newspaper, the Harding Herald and was a member of the National Honor Society. She was employed for fours years in Columbus, Ohio as secretary to the traffic manager of the H. C. Godman Shoe Manufacturing Company.
On July 18, 1938 she married Walter C. Haldeman who died in 1990. Their two children are Katharin Suzanne Haldeman Decker Sands (Bob) of Henderson, N, born in 1941 and David Joseph Haldeman of Cincinnati, Ohio, born in 1945. Her grandchildren are David Decker of Albuquerque, NM, Kristine Wright of Fairfield, CA, Sarah Haldeman Sapp of Urbana, OH, Josh and Susannah Haldeman of Cincinnati, and Jed Haldeman of Columbus. Her great-grandchildren are Thad Sapp of Urbana, and Kyle, Shane and Tyler Wright of Fairfax, CA.
On February 14, 1953 she married Ray Romine. They built their home, Terradise, on the banks of the Whetstone River southwest of Caledonia. Ray died on August 24, 1954. A dear family friend, Howard Howser, resided at Terradise for twenty years and maintained the greenhouse and surrounding gardens.
Trella purchased Hemmerly’s Flowers in 1957 from her parents and was the president and manager of Hemmerly’s Flowers, Inc. from 1957 until her retirement in 1982. At that time she pursued her other interests. She was a founding, charter and honorary life member and past president of the Marion County Historical Society and the Edward Huber Memorial Association. She was president of the Ohio Association of Historical Societies and Museums of the Ohio Historical Society. She was a member of Trinity Baptist Church where she was superintendent of Junior Department in the 1940s.
Trella initiated the formation of the Marion County Park District and gave twelve acres of Terradise to it as the Terradise Nature Preserve. In 1990 Terradise was named an Ohio Natural Landmark of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Each spring she hosted an Open Garden at Terradise.
Her discovery and purchase of a remnant prairie in Green Camp Township led to its being named the Trella Romine Prairie Preserve. She encouraged the development of the Larry Yoder Prairie on the Marion Campus of Ohio State University and the shelter house there was dedicated to her. The Ohio State University presented the Distinguished Service Award to her at the 2012 Summer Commencement on the OSU Campus.
The family will host visiting hours at the Boyd-Born Funeral Home, 122 West Columbia Street, Marion on Friday February 22 from 4-7 PM and Saturday from 1 PM until time of service at 2 PM at Trinity Baptist Church, 244 S. Main Street. Burial will be in Marion Cemetery with a graveside service at 11 AM Monday, February 25.
The family welcomes floral tributes, or contributions to the Marion County Historical Society, 169 East Church Street, Marion, OH 43302, the Edward Huber Machinery Museum, 220 East Fairground Street, Marion, OH 43302 or the Friends of Prairie Parks at the Marion County Park District, 222 West Center St, Marion, OH 43302