Mary R. Kochel, 86, Ephrata, active at First U.M. Church, enjoyed time with family

By on November 19, 2014

Mary R. Kochel, 86, of Ephrata, went home to be with the Lord Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014 at her residence.

Her husband, the late LeRoy C. Kochel, passed away January 19, 1998. Born in Ephrata, Mary was a daughter of the late Chester H. and Anna M. (Landis) Espenshade.

Mary was a life-long member of the First United Methodist Church of Ephrata where she was a Sunday school teacher, children’s choir director, 50-year member of the senior choir, and was also active in the lay ministries of the church.

A member of the Ephrata High School Class of 1945, Mary was active in class reunion planning and was class treasurer. She also attended Juniata College.

Mary enjoyed gardening, bird watching, and most of all spending quality time with her entire family. She was beloved to all her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, family, and friends.

She is survived by two daughters: Lizabeth “Libby,” wife of Richard Barwis of Ambler; and Janet M., wife of Douglas Smith of West Palm Beach, Fla.; one son: Philip L. Kochel, husband of Cheryl, of Clay Township; 10 grandchildren; and 17 great-grandchildren.

Services were held Nov. 18 at First U.M. Church, Ephrata, with the Reverend Walter Carter officiating. Place of interment was Memory Gardens, East Cocalico Township.

Donations in Mary’s memory may be made to the First United Methodist Church Compassion Fund, 68 N. Church Ave., Ephrata, PA 17522.

Services are under the care of Paul L. Gravenor Home For Funerals, Ephrata. To send an online condolence, visit

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