The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022

David W. Owens

David W. Owens, 95, died Thursday, April 1, 2021, at Vancrest Health Care Center in Van Wert following a 10-day illness. His long life was even more remarkable considering he fought a year-long battle with cancer 44 years ago. For the rest of his life, he offered encouragement to others battling cancer. 

David W. Owens

Dave was born December 5, 1925, in a farmhouse in York Township and lived almost his entire life on Jonestown Road. His parents were E. Glen Owens and Leona (Davies) Owens, who both preceded him in death. He married Jean (Keirns) Owens on November 28, 1949, and she survives him. 

He had four children: Dennis Owens (deceased), Mary Ann Owens of Baltimore, Maryland, Michael (Diane) David Owens of Middle Point, and Terry Dean (Debbie) Owens of Ohio City; seven grandchildren, Ryanne (Steve) Bollenbacher of Van Wert, Matthew (Crista) Owens of Lima, Adam (Morgan) Owens of Venedocia, David (Beverly) Mathews of White Hall, Maryland, Jenny (Mike) Slattery of Vienna, Virginia, Mandy (Travis) Lamb of Franklin, and Seth (Kylie) Owens of Van Wert; three stepgrandchildren, Curtis (Tanya) Ropp of California, Tracy Ropp of Indianapolis, Indiana, and Ashley (Scott) Miller of Van Wert; 17 great-grandchildren, Kendall, Luke, Brezlyn, Elijah, Grant, Carter, and Gwyneth Owens, Madi and Mikey Lamb, Alyssa, Lauren, and Owen Mathews, and Claire, Walker, Danielle, Whitney, and Simon Slattery; and six stepgreat-grandchildren, Calvin Ropp, and Zane, Camden, Neive, Bellamy, and Cabot.

Dave was a member of Salem Presbyterian Church in Venedocia his entire life. He served on the Board of Trustees and the Session for several terms. He was proud of his Welsh heritage and was pleased when DNA confirmed that he was 93 percent Welsh. He was known for his wonderful tenor voice and sang in many ensembles through the years, including for over 100 funerals. One of his favorite days of the year was Gymanfa Ganu Sunday, when he could sit with other tenors and sing praises in four-part harmony.

When Dave started farming, they used horses. And even when they purchased machinery, it was used and needed a lot of mechanical attention to keep it going. As with all farmers, his pace was slower in the winter, but during planting and harvest, they worked long hard hours, often with their wives delivering meals to the fields. He was proud of his crops and would walk the fields feeling the dirt and examining the wheat or beans or corn to see how the crop was developing. 

Dave was meticulous about how he did things. When he was planting, he wanted the rows to be straight. He felt strongly there was a right way to do things — a right way to prepare the farm equipment, a right time when you should plant, and you never left any machinery outside. He wanted every piece of equipment to be covered. He kept calendars almost like diaries, so when Terry and his family took over the farm, they had calendars that went back years with every detail of the weather and what was happening on the farm. He served York Township as a trustee and spent many hours mowing roads and running a snowplow.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, April 6, at Salem Presbyterian Church in Venedocia. Honorary pallbearers will be Don and Jeff Owens, Steve Bollenbacher, Matt, Adam, and Seth Owens, David Mathews, Travis Lamb, and Mike Slattery.

Visitation will be prior to the funeral from 9 a.m. until the time of services Tuesday at the church. 

Attendees are required to observe social distancing, refrain from close physical contact, and wear facial coverings.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Salem Presbyterian Church.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Alspach-Gearhart Funeral Home & Crematory in Van Wert. To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of David Owens, visit Alspach-Gearhart’s floral store.

Condolences may be expressed at

POSTED: 04/01/21 at 4:39 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries