Judith Ann (Hornor) Savage, 84, died peacefully at home in Wyoming, Ohio, on Wednesday April 28, 2021 from complications of Parkinson’s disease. She lived a full, meaningful and joyous life dedicated to the service and care of others, including her husband of more than six decades, her three children, five grandchildren, and hundreds of patients through her career as a hospice nurse, volunteer, and EMT/Paramedic.
Judy was born on March 4, 1937 in Charleston, WV, to Eleanor (Keim) Hornor and Thomas Roland Hornor, the youngest of three girls. She was predeceased by her parents and sisters Martha (Hornor) Hickman and Elizabeth “Libby” (Hornor) Clark.
Judy leaves behind her devoted and beloved husband of 65 years, David J. Savage, Jr. Judy and Dave first met in grade school in their hometown of Charleston, WV, and began dating in high school. They graduated from Stonewall Jackson High School in 1954, she as Salutatorian of their class. While in college they eloped, sending a telegram to their parents that they had married.
Judy was a proud and devoted stay-at-home mother in her younger adult years. An accomplished homemaker and cook, she made careful notes of who in the family liked which recipes. She prided herself on packing school lunches. Armed with a casserole dish she could stretch the family budget by inventing meals from a nearly empty cupboard if necessary. She often read to her young children, teaching them to read for themselves at an early age. She regularly volunteered with Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Brownies and Girl Scouts.
As her children grew she began a service to the City of Wyoming by becoming certified as an EMT and volunteering for the Wyoming Life Squad. In that role she helped pioneer the first Paramedic service provided by the Squad, becoming one of the first qualified Paramedics for the City.
Judy further developed her career in healthcare by graduating in 1985 from University of Cincinnati Raymond Walters with a degree in nursing. She started as a floor nurse and then became a home care nurse at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Her experience led her to believe strongly in the need for hospice care for children, joining with other nurses to create the first pediatric hospice program at Children’s Hospital. That program would become known as Starshine, which continues to provide valuable care to children whose life expectancy is six months or less and their families.
She also took her nursing skills to Africa where she worked to set up a malnutrition ward at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka, Zambia, and later helped improve the care for children with AIDS at the Kasisi Children’s Home in Zambia through the International Executive Service Corps.
During her career she continued to serve the City of Wyoming by supporting David as he served in city council and Mayor for more than 20 years. Her wisdom and empathy were perfect complements to David’s knowledge and energy, and David’s tenure as mayor of Wyoming would have been shorter and far less successful without Judy—or Judith Ann as he often called her--at his side.
Judy and Dave shared a sense of adventure that led them to travel the country and the world, living for several years in the 1970s in Caracas, Venezuela, and frequently welcoming international visitors into their Wyoming home. Judy embraced learning and discovery, and traveled to China to assist with the adoption of one of her granddaughters. Their personal travels took them literally around the world to Australia, Brazil, Iceland and across Europe and the United States.
She approached each stage of her life and career with energy and dedication. She retired at the age of 70.
Following up on an interest sparked by her father, Judy was a dogged researcher of her family’s genealogy. She was a member of the Cincinnati Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the National Society of Colonial Dames XVII Century. Through the years she also was a member of Wyoming Women’s Club, Alpha Xi Delta, and the Bridgeway Point Parkinson’s Disease Support Group.
Judy and David had three children, David J. “Jack” Savage III of Middleton, NH, Thomas Jonathan Savage of Sacramento, CA, , and Susan Elizabeth (Savage) Kline of Rochester, NY, all of whom were raised in Wyoming and graduated from Wyoming High School. She made sure that each of her children are certain that they were her favorite. Her sense of humor and bottomless well of patience and understanding served her well as a mother, wife and medical professional.
Grandchildren include Claire and Abbie Savage of Sacramento, CA, Devon Kline of Saranac Lake, NY, Bridget Kline and Brian Kline of Rochester, NY, who were all even more favorite and brought her great joy.
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 15, 2021 at Friendship United Methodist Church in Wyoming, where Judy and David have been members for more than 50 years.
In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations in Judith Ann Savage’s memory to Starshine Hospice Program, which can be made online at www.cincinnatichildrens.org/donate by phone by calling 513.636.4484, or by mail to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, PO Box 5202, Cincinnati, OH 45201-5202.