Anola Lauer (nee Shrader), of Westerville, Ohio was supposed to die in 1967, when, at the age of 20, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Doctors said that surviving surgery was unlikely, and if she survived, that she would be blind. Neither occurred and instead she lived a life filled with laughter, friends, children, and the gentle company of her husband, Jim Lauer. Anola and Jim were best friends. They could talk for hours or just as happily sit quietly in each other's company. They spent their final morning together chit-chatting over breakfast. Anola suffered a stroke and passed on March 13, 2021, with her family at her side. She had two children, Sarah Andrews and John Lauer and two grandchildren, Xavier (11) and Ulysses (9), all of whom feel great gratitude that they were able to be with her in the final moments of her life, along with her brother Steve Shrader, sister-in-law Sue Shrader and son-in-law Aniket Hirebet.
Anola was also the beloved daughter of Jan and John Shrader, sister of Dan Shrader, aunt to Steve, Amanda, Ryan, Michelle, Wendie, Justin, Meg, Nolan and Tara, great aunt to all of their children and sister-in-law to Ann, Marilyn, Peg and Janet.
Anola was born in Bishop, Virginia and moved to Ohio as a teenager, where her parents established Rebel Hill Farm, a place to which she regularly returned to be with her family. She attended Ohio Wesleyan University, pledging Pi Beta Phi and graduating with a degree in dietetics. She remembered these years fondly and enjoyed meeting up with her college friends until the end of her life.
She met Jim in Hawaii in June of 1971, where Jim was in the U.S. Army stationed at a Boy Scout camp and she was serving as the Food Services Director at the neighboring Girl Scout camp. She told him her name was “Cinnamon.” He knew he would marry her immediately. She must not have been as sure, because it was several weeks before she told him her real name. They eventually settled in Salem, Ohio to start their family, and later moved to Westerville where Anola had a career as a bookkeeper for several small businesses. She was passionate about antiquing and picking through flea markets and thrift stores, maintaining an antique booth called the Ruby Cupboard. She also enjoyed traveling, most especially taking cruises to Alaska, which she visited twice, the last time, famously, with her father and her husband, but without any of her luggage having made it. The photo of the “black tie” dinner she attended in the jeans and t-shirt she wore on the flight remains a family favorite. She loved to build puzzles and often built them with her grandsons. She was dedicated to the celebration of holidays, especially Christmas, and her children remember many happy rituals involving baking and extravagantly decorating, and the events she made special through her grand sense of occasion.
The family is hosting calling hours at Hill Funeral Home at 220 S. State Street, Westerville, Ohio on Tuesday March 16, 2021 from 5pm to 7pm. It will be followed by a small, private service at 7pm. The service will also be livestreamed at HILL FUNERL HOME'S YouTube Channel for those who are unable to attend and in observance of Covid-19 guidelines for gatherings.
Donations to Operation Smile or to the Mid-Ohio Foodbank would be a beautiful tribute to her memory