Melvin Lloyd Ward
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Melvin Lloyd Ward
He lived in Oil City, Cochranton, Meadville, and Conneaut Lake while growing up. With no work in the area the family moved to Seattle, Washington for a brief time before settling in Burbank, California in 1953. During this time, Melvin had attended three different high schools his senior year before graduation from Burbank High School Class of 1953. He went from a class of 50 students to a graduating class of over 1,000 students. He began working in the tool and die trade after graduation then decided to attend Glendale Junior College for Jewelry Making and Stone Identification. He went rock hunting in Alaska, Montana, Mexico, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, and the surrounding states. He licked every rock he found to see the color and what tools he didn't have, he made. He was a jack of all trades, could fix anything, and shared his knowledge and talent with family and friends. He will be missed. Melvin and his father opened their first jewelry store in 1962 in Burbank closing the store in 1991. It was one of the largest jewelry stores in the area, and miners would bring their stones to Melvin and he would distribute them to other retailers in the area. He produced a water squirting ring for the movie "Thoroughly Modern Millie" as well as did work for Roy Rogers, Disney, and Carol Channing. He was always known for saying "the impossible takes a little longer." He taught jewelry making for the Erie Rock Club and many other rock clubs through the years, and at Glendale Junior College. He loved to talk with others and never had a bad day. He will be known for always having a smile on his face.
Mel was always busy and involved with Archery Club, Bowling League, Lockheed Rock Crafters, he took many big game hunts with his horses, and was in many rock organizations. During the winter months he could be found in Zephyrhills, Florida and was a member of First Baptist Church of Greenville.
He is survived by his first wife and mother of his children, Sandy Ward; four daughters, Nancy (Dave) Teasley of Tennessee, Cindy (Drew) Ratzloff of California, Gayle (Dean) Jenkins of California, and Wendie (Todd) Gillespie of California; eight grandchildren; one step grandchild; four great grandchildren; two sisters, Arlene (Bob) Dougherty of Fort Collins, Colorado and Anna (LaVerne) Larson of Meadville; step children, Kim (Ken) Kebort of Saegertown, Kelly (Frank) Bortuzzi of Cortland, Ohio, and Kathy (Tracy) Porter of Linesville; three step grandchildren; two step great grandchildren; a sister in law, Janet Hanson of Meadville; sister in law and brother in law, John and Joyce Woge of Meadville; many nieces and nephews; and great nieces and nephews.
In addition to his wife, Jean; he was preceded in death by his parents; a sister and brother in law, Ella May and Chuck Graham of California; and a nephew, Ted Larson of Meadville.
Family and friends are welcome to attend a graveside service on Friday, August 16th at Venango Cemetery, 22399 Cemetery Road, Venango, PA at 11:00am.
Please take a moment to share a memory, condolence, or to order flowers for the family on Melvin's Book of Memories online at www.warrenfh.com
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