SOMERSET—Long-time resident Ottilie Tag, known to friends as Tillie, died of natural causes not related to COVID at Siemon’s Lakeview Manor Nursing Center on December 28, 2020. She had just turned 97 years old.
Tillie is survived by three sons, a brother-in-law, and a stepson’s wife: Paul M. Tag and his wife, Rebecca, of Monterey, California; Keven R. Tag and his wife, Marcia, of Strongsville, Ohio; Frederick C. Tag and his wife, Debra, of Moreland, Georgia; Charles Mowry, brother-in-law; Therese Lancaster, wife of stepson, Bud Lancaster, of Grass Valley, California, and their family. She is also survived by grandchildren Melissa, Rachel, Jessica, Heather, and Aaron, in addition to numerous nieces and nephews.
Born December 27, 1923, in Fairhope, Pennsylvania, Tillie was the fifth child of Fred and Mollie (Woida) Kern, who immigrated from Russia in 1913. She grew up on her parents’ farm with three brothers and two sisters, an early life that included hard work but which also taught her the importance of cooperation and the need to innovate solutions to life’s challenges. Tillie was one of a generation who had gone to school in a one-room schoolhouse, and as she reminded her children, walked miles each school day, often through rain and deep snow. Into her seventies, she worked as a waitress. Before she moved to Hermitage, Pennsylvania, in 1970, she worked for years in a Howard Johnson restaurant on the turnpike in Somerset. In Hermitage, she worked for a family diner.
Tillie married Luther B. Widmeyer of Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, at the end of World War II, a union that lasted only a few years. She later married Herbert C. Tag of Union, New Jersey. This marriage lasted some forty-six years, until Herbert’s death in 2004. She returned to Somerset in 2005 to be close to siblings and other family.
As a person, Tillie had an even personality and the ability to weather hard times with strength and understanding. Perhaps the most important trait she conveyed to her sons was her strong work ethic.
Tillie was a member of Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church of Glen Savage.
Tillie was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and three brothers: Gus Kern, who lost his life in World War II, and Julius Kern and August Kern of Fairhope; two sisters: Susan O’Neil, of Meyersdale, and Hilda Mowry, of Berlin; and stepson Bud Lancaster.
A graveside service will be held on Thursday, December 31, at 11AM at the church cemetery; a memorial service is planned for later. Arrangements entrusted to Deaner Funeral Homes, Berlin. Contributions may be given to Trinity Lutheran Church, 630 Church Rd., Fairhope, PA 15538. Condolences to the family may be offered at DeanerFuneralsAndCremations.com.
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