Florence “Toby” Lord

April 14, 1919 ‒ January 24, 2016

Gambier, Ohio

Florence S. “Toby” Lord, 96, of Gambier, passed away on Sunday, January 24, 2016 at home surrounded by her family. She was born April 14, 1919 in Dubois, PA.  Her parents were Ann (Polihonki) and George D. Sells.  She graduated from Lakewood, OH, High School in 1937.  Toby attended Allegheny College in Meadville, PA where she was active in the Allegheny Singers and Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority.  She remained active in the sorority throughout her life.

Following graduation from Allegheny in 1941, Toby was employed as the executive assistant to the President of Talon, Inc. in Meadville. She enjoyed flying, was a licensed pilot, and a member of the Ninety-Nines Organization of Women Pilots.  She married in 1949 and the family moved to Knox County, OH in 1959.  Toby worked in various positions at Kenyon College, including the Admissions Office and as Coordinator of the Colburn Gallery and Administrative to the Art Department.  Toby also worked for 30 years as a realtor and made many friends throughout the county helping clients find and sell their homes.  She was a secretary and treasurer for Knox County Board of Realtors.  The Knox County Board of Realtors presented Toby with the Crystal Mile Award, a lifetime achievement honor, in 2009.

In the Knox County community, Toby was a 50-year faithful member of the First Presbyterian Church in Mount Vernon where she served as trustee. She was one of the original members of the Mount Vernon Players in the 1960’s and also acted in Kenyon theatrical productions including, “The Crucible” and “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf”.  She passed on her love of theater to her children and grandchildren.

Toby was an active golfer and scored a hole-in-one at the Mount Vernon Country Club. She was also a member of Town & Country Garden Club, bridge clubs, book club, American Association of University Women, and the Knox County Republican Women’s Club. She bowled with the Kenyon Keglers and, following retirement, enjoyed friendships through the After Kenyon Society.

Toby was a regular at auctions throughout Knox County and furnished her home with many auction finds. She was an active reader, kept up on current events, wrote poetry, loved crosswords and watching Jeopardy.

Toby is survived by daughters, Rebecca (John) Simpson of Gambier, Katharine Fannin of Mount Vernon and Martha (Glenn) Trese of Howard; grandchildren, Gloria Lord-King (Winston Bowman) and Monica King of Massachusetts, Ana-Marie (Freddie) de La Rosa of Texas, Samantha Bissel of North Carolina, Luke Trese of Howard and many nieces and nephews. Toby cherished her many loving friends and neighbors.

She was preceded in death by her parents, brother, Dr. Richard J. (Harriet) Sells, and former husband, Samuel Lord.

A memorial service honoring Toby Lord will be on Saturday, February 6, 2016 at the First Presbyterian Church, 206 N. Gay St. Mount Vernon, OH, 43050 at 11:00 AM, with Rev. Lauren Miller officiating. Friends may gather in the fellowship hall after for a time of sharing.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: First Presbyterian Church, building fund.

To view this obituary or share a memory, visit: www.snyderfuneralhomes.com.

The Flowers-Snyder Funeral Home of Mount Vernon is honored to serve the family of Florence S. “Toby” Lord.

  • I’m glad I got the chance to see her again at Gloria and Winston’s wedding. She was very kind and gracious.

    Jerry King

  • Loved that woman and her brilliant mind! She was always positive and kind to others! I would see her at Kroger in the motorized shopping cart and joked about her driving skills! Her best friend Patricia Mickley visited her often and shared many a meal with her. They would dine and go to plays together which she enjoyed. She had many travels and stories about the wonderful things she saw and places she visited. She enjoyed life to it’s fullest and had a mind of her own. Some may call it stubbornness but I called it “doing it my way.” She was such a wise and humble soul and will be missed. Until I see you again “Toby.”

  • Becky, I am so sorry for your loss. I just found out as I was going through some older papers that my sister gave me. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. If there is anything I can do just let me know. 740-398-0592 Your mother was a very beautiful lady.

  • I too just found out that Toby passed. To all her loved ones know that we are praying for your loss. Toby was one of the first people on the street to greet us when we moved to Gambier from Colorado. We had many talks about being Republicans, real estate markets, and antiques. As she walked by our home, and visited on one occasion we got to enjoy this lady full of grace, humor, and strength. It was great to get to know her if only for a short time. God bless and keep you all. Beau & Marty