The Van Wert County Courthouse

Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2022

Rose J. Merkle

Rose J. Merkle, 85, of Hudson, Indiana, and formerly of Van Wert, passed away peacefully at 9:39 p.m. Saturday, August 21, 2021, at her residence while surrounded by her loving family. 

Rose J. Merkle

She was born June 21, 1936, in Van Wert, the daughter of Fred and Bertha (Hundley) Campbell, who both preceded her in death. On February 18, 1956, she married the love of her life, Lester Merkle. Together, they shared years of memories. 

Rose was a 1955 graduate of Van Wert High School. She was a lifelong farm wife and homemaker. Rose worked at Stoller Hatchery in her early years and as a caretaker with Visiting Nurses later in life. She was an advocate for her patients and helped start one of the earliest Alzheimer’s awareness groups in the area.

Rose and Lester have had a lake house at Big Turkey Lake since the ’80s and fulfilled their dream of full-time lake life in 1998, building their dream cabin. 

Rose enjoyed night fishing with Lester, canning, and was a gifted quilter. She was an antique enthusiast and restored many pieces. She loved animals of all kinds and rescued many throughout her life, often taking on the ones no one else wanted. Rose previously sang in the Fort Wayne Choral Society with her father-in-law, often performing in The Messiah.  

Rose truly loved her family. Spoiling her grandchildren and spending time with her family were her most cherished memories. 

Rose was a faithful member of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church and attended regularly. 

Those left to cherish her memory are her husband, Lester of Hudson, Indiana; a son, Richard (Jody) Merkle of Ohio City; one daughter, Vickae Meenach of Vail, Colorado; a sister, Dorothy Stuckey of Grover Hill; four grandchildren, Abby (Derek) Stemen of Lima, Troy Merkle of Ohio City, Jenna Meenach of Vail, and Jaryd Meenach of Marina del Rey, California; three great-grandchildren, Eliza, Leah, and Drew Stemen, all of Lima; numerous nieces and nephews, including William Campbell; as well as her beloved dog, Spike, and cat, Thomas. 

She was also preceded in death by her sisters, Alice Stevens, Winifred Wilson, and Patricia Stucky

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, August 28, at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Stroh, Indiana. 

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Rose`s memory may be sent to Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Stroh Fire Department, or Hudson Fire Department.

Condolences may be expressed at

Arrangements have been entrusted to Alspach-Gearhart Funeral Home & Crematory in Van Wert.

POSTED: 08/24/21 at 12:12 pm. FILED UNDER: Obituaries