Donald Eugene Welever, 88, passed away suddenly March 11, 2012. He was born September 13, 1923, in Detroit, Michigan to Clarence Archie Welever and Thelma (Van Buren) Welever both of Toledo, Ohio.
He grew up in and around Akron, Ohio and attended Coventry High School, graduating in 1942, and then enrolled at Kent State University before WWII. He was inducted into the US Army February 6, 1943, where he saw combat as part of an artillery forward observer team in the Ardennes, Rhineland, and Central Europe campaigns with General Patton’s 87th Infantry Division. While fighting in the Battle of the Bulge he was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for Valor and Oak Leaf Cluster. Don was also presented April 16, 2007, with the Knights of the Legion of Honor Medal by the French government. This Legion of Honor was created by Napoleon Bonaparte. The first consul, on May 19, 1802, as a general military and civil order of merit conferred without regard to birth or religion provided that anyone admitted swears to uphold liberty and equality.
Back in the states, he transferred to the University of Akron where he received a B.S. in Business and an M.S. in Education. He taught in Akron and Barberton classrooms and served as a high school principal in Twinsburg and Wadsworth. He joined the administrative ranks of Kent State University’s Branch Campuses where he joined community leaders to help build the Geauga Campus in Burton, Ohio in 1975. He retired in September of 1978.
He received his fiftieth year award November 19, 1996 from the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Ohio. He held memberships in a number of service clubs, principally the Twinsburg Rotary, as president, and the Wadsworth Lions Club. On September 18, 2003, he was approved membership in the Lafayette Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution after tracing his lineage to Moses Mandell his fourth grandfather, who served in that war. His genealogical study also found that the eighth President, Martin Van Buren, was a “shirt tail relative” through his mother Thelma.
During the fall of 2003, he gained membership in the Ohio Genealogical Society and in its sister chapter of Wood County. Upon further study he found that he was the great grand nephew of Henry Edgar Mandell and George Dallies Weliever, both Civil War Veterans. Thereupon, he gained membership in the Society of Civil War Families of Ohio in the spring of 2004, he gained charter membership in the Settlers and Builders of Ohio. Great-Grandmother Ada M. Welever (Mandell) was one of eight children born to Henry and Frederica Mandell (Creps) in Ohio before 1860. The family lived east of Perrysburg, Ohio on a small farm.
After being prompted by a crest found in the Van Buren Genealogical history test, he developed the Welever Coat of Arms. The American College of Heraldry, December 18, 2002, conferred all of the rights and privileges of a member of this society to Mr. Welever and his family.
Don is preceded in death by Ruth Juan Welever (Sliger), his loving wife for 40 years, and brother Clarence Jack Welever.
Don has four children Gayle Lynn (William) McBride, Guy Alan (Margaret) Welever, Janice Kay (Curtis) Hoover, Robin Rice (Theodore) Stavroff, grandchildren Sean Edward Moriarty and his twin sons Noah Ryan and Zackary Thomas, Burke Alan, Hannah Elizabeth Welever, Andrew Christian Braun, Katrina Marie, Chelsea Elizabeth Hoover, Kevin Andrew, Ruth Louise, and Donald Martin Stavroff.
Other Survivors include his loving wife of 24 years, Charlotte Mae (Longenecker) Welever, step children Bruce (Sandy) Longenecker, Beckey (Danny) Greene, step grandchildren Thomas and Chase Longenecker, and Aaron Welch, his sister Florence Lillian Combest, (Russ) Debra, Michael, Ronald and Laura.
A small private service was held for the family at Manchester Cemetery in New Franklin, OH.