THE BIOGRAPGY OF DOROTHY LOVENIA WALMER NOBLE
BY JOSHUA NOBLE
Pictured above is the Walmer Home.
It was in the town of Wooster, OH that Floyd and Edith Conkle Walmer lived. Floyd Walmer was born in 1890, and Grace his sister was born in 1892 to John and Armenia (Minnie) Walmer.
Pictured above are Floyd and Grace Walmer
John, Minnie, Floyd and Grace Walmer
Pictured above is John Walmer
Early on in life, Floyd had wanted to become a physician, but it was expensive and had to earn a lot of money for tuition. One of his friends who was actually one of his father’s hands on his farm, was Karl Compton who got his PhD in Physics. He later became the president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and later became one of the leading scientists who created the Atomic Bomb.
Pictured above is Floyd Walmer at Ada College
Grace Walmer invited over two local girls to her house while Floyd was in Ohio Northern University. One of those girls invited Grace to invite to spend Christmas with her family. So, Grace went over there and Floyd, who had returned home for the holidays, accompanied her. The girl was Edith Naomi Conkle.
Grace Walmer Casey
Bert and Grace Walmer Casey
Edith Conkle Walmer above
Floyd and Edith were married in August of 1914. Floyd and Edith ran a hotel called Liberty Hotel in Wooster. However, the hotel didn’t do too well. Furthermore, Grace was very sick with nephritis. So, they sold the hotel and moved back home to help on his father (John Walmer)’s farm.
Pictured above is the wedding photo of Floyd and Edith Walmer, August 1914
Grace Walmer Casey unfortunately died a few weeks later.
Grace Walmer Casey. She was only 23 years old.
Floyd and Edith moved to Wooster where he Floyd got a job at a rubber plant. After the rubber plant went bankrupt, he worked at a machine shop. Then he went to work at a pickle factory. The pickle factory was not to his liking, so they moved back to John Walmer’s farm where he maintained it, and helped his father in painting. Several works by John and Floyd still survive today.
A painting that was painted by John Walmer
In fact, one is in the possession of Harry Walmer, their youngest son. Floyd and John Walmer decided to downsize, so they sold their 160 acre farm and moved about 1 mile east to a smaller farm of 63 acres. The 160 acre farm was a wedding gift from his father in law after his marriage to Minnie. At the time of the move, Edith was pregnant and Minnie was sick with pneumonia. But they managed it.
Virginia Walmer Hunter
On May 1, 1920, Virginia Walmer was born. During her childhood, she always had to take care of the chickens on the farm when school was out and was active in the 4H club. She was sent through High School, and she went on to a business college. She was the secretary of the board of the 4H directory. She went to Wooster every day.
Floyd Walmer’s favorite thing to play was crocket. His daughter, Dorothy later said,
“We played crocket a lot. My father had a crocket diamond that was used not just for us kids, but for different groups that was a crocket team throughout the county there and they’d always come down to my Dad’s crocket field to compete in the final competition. So, that was my favorite game was crocket.”
Twins Dorothy and Dean Walmer, 14 mos old
Minnie died in August of 1920. On December 25, 1922 twins were born to Floyd and Edith Walmer. The twins were named Dorothy Lovenia and Dean. They were born at home. Dorothy was pronounced dead on arrival. She was wrapped in a blanket and placed on the kitchen table while and laid there for a couple of hours while the doctor took care of Edith and Dean. The doctor was about to leave and was putting his coat on, when Dorothy began to cry. Dorothy said, “My daddy said that he never saw that doctor move so fast in all his life because he got to me, and did what he needed to do. Of course, he had to wait another couple of hours. But I did all right, and they never could understand how I could lay there like that for two hours before I’d come to life. ”
Virginia (who was then 3), was at a neighbor’s house and she was brought home afterwards and she was brought over to where her new siblings were. She stood over Dean, looking with curiosity and marveling when Dorothy started fussing. She went over to Dorothy’s basket and said, “Oh Mommy, look here, here’s another one”.
They made the house larger by adding a new kitchen. Furthermore, electric lines had reached their farm and running water was installed (they used a pump beforehand). In 1925, Harry Walmer was born to Edith and Floyd. In 1927, John Walmer got interested into Mary Runkle who had previously been divorced. Because Floyd and Edith didn’t approve of her, John took one acre and he and Floyd built a 2 story house. John (69) married Mary (52) on July 1, 1928. On December 26, 1933, Dorothy was in her bedroom and from her window; she could see her grandfather’s workshop. Suddenly, she saw her grandfather’s work hands carrying her grandfather out of the workshop. They laid him on the couch. They said that he died instantly. Later, they learned that it was a heart attack which happened while he was reaching up to get something for a customer. When the heart attack happened, he fell to the ground. Before John died, he told Mary that she have the farm. However, after he died, she was told by the attorneys that everything including the house, farm, and possessions were to be passed down to Floyd’s children. Mary was furious. She sold all the furniture at auction. Floyd was only able to buy back a small amount due to the depression. Mary burned the rest where Floyd could see it. Afterwards, Mary moved to live with the children of her previous marriage, Floyd rented the house.
“We went to a two room country school.” Dorothy later said about her school. “1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th in one room, and 5th, 6th, 7, and 8th in the other room and, we always had a good time in school. All the kids were friendly, mostly farm kids and we walked to school. We didn’t have a school bus then until later when I was about in 7th grade. We had a school bus that came around and surprised the school kids and one of them was my sister. He (the driver) said that he would take us to school so we got up and rode to school after that because we had to walk a mile and a half to school.”
They were all active in 4H and both boys helped on the farm. Dorothy and Virginia mostly helped in the garden. Their main jobs were to feed the chickens, collect the eggs, and milk the cows. Dorothy had a calf that was brown and white. Her calf was named Dolly and was entered into different competitions. One of the things that they grew in the farm was mushrooms which Edith liked a whole lot.
Virginia took piano, and Dorothy like Mozart would listen to her sister play, and then get up on the piano after Virginia was done and play the exact same thing. She learned it all by ear and plays very beautifully today.
Grandpa Harvey Conkle, with Walmer Twins, Dorothy and Dean.
Edith, Grace and Virginia also pictured.
Grandpa Conkle with Virginia, Twins, Dorothy and Dean (babies in his lap)
Grandpa Conkle lived in Holmes County, Ohio. The children’s summer vacations were to go down to Grandpa Conkle’s farm and spend a week there. They went two at a time. They also visited their aunt who lived there in Akron.
Grandpa Conkle in the buggy at his home
It was in mid 1935 that Dorothy was in Akron, OH. She got Diphtheria and had a fever at 107 degrees. This usually leads to brain damage. However, it soon turned into Scarlet Fever. During this time, she had a vision in which there were bright lights with a fence and flowers. There was a voice that told her that it wasn’t her time to be there and that He needed her children. The Lord eventually touched her body and made her well.
Dean Walmer, taken in 1933
On November 5, 1935, a boy named Roy Metsker was driving to High School. His car ran out of gas and Dean (12) and 3 other boys saw him. They helped Roy push the car to a neighbor’s house for gas. It was time for school to start, so he told them to jump on the running board and he’d give them a ride because it was a half mile to school. They were pulling into the driveway and Roy made a wide turn to give them a sort of thrill. Dean flew off the running board he was on, and crashed into a tree. His parents were notified, and Dean was taken to the Wooster hospital. He was dead by the time his parents got there. The doctors said that had he survived, he would have been paralyzed from the neck down. Dorothy (12) and Harry (2) were at Edith’s sister and brother in law’s house in Akron, OH.
Dorothy and her 4H Banner
When Dorothy was 17, she was still in 4H and she won the salad making competition. She got her picture taken and put in the Ohio State News Sheet. It was one of her crowning achievements at 4H.
Dorothy and her HS graduation Picture
Dorothy attended High School and was even on the basketball team as guard. After Dorothy graduated from High School in Wooster, OH, she went to work at Keani’s Cafeteria as waitress, and salad girl. When she was 19, she and her father ordered an accordion out of a Montgomery catalog because she wanted to learn how to play it. She taught herself how to play the accordion. She was later invited to different churches that had revival meetings to play her accordion and sing hymns.
Dorothy and her Accordian
In 1942, Virginia married Wayne Hunter. Floyd and Edith Walmer took Dorothy to one of her first revival meetings. One of the singers there was Clifford Noble, who was the lead singer for his church and there was also another man and fellow evangelist called Wade Jakeway. Jakeway who could sing and play the accordion whom was one of Clifford’s friends from Michigan. They met after the service.
In January of 1944, Harry Walmer was drafted into the U.S. Army Corps (this was before they invented the U.S. Air Force). He arrived in England in November of that same year, and he was assigned to fly in as a gunner in one of the lower turrets of a B-17 bomber during WWII. He was in the 379th Bomb Group. His group attacked and destroyed different Nazi places in Germany, such as railroad stations, gun factories, bomb factories, and even fought in a few battles including the Battle of the Bulge, one of the worst battles of WWII for both sides.
Below is the Floyd Walmer Family 1944
Clifford and Dorothy Noble’s Wedding picture 1943
Meanwhile, back in Ohio, Dorothy Walmer was married Clifford Noble on December 25, 1943. They went on their honeymoon by going down to West Virginia for a couple of days to visit and stay with his grandparents and then returning. Immediately after graduating from Anderson University, Clifford and Dorothy moved to Pontiac, Michigan. While they were there, Dorothy gave birth to twins named Ronald Eugene and Roger on Sunday, in 1945. While the twins were being born, Harry Walmer had just been mustered out of the U.S. Army Corps and was flying across the Atlantic Ocean. In 1946, Clifford went to Anderson College and later became a minister after he graduated.
Dorothy with Twins, Roger and Ronald
Twins Roger and Ronald at 4 months old
Harry arrived home where he went to college at Bob Jones University in Cleveland, South Carolina. He met, fell in love with, and married fellow student Loretta Mick ‘Mickey’ in 1949.
In 1948, Floyd retired from active farming at the age of 58. He still kept 1 cow, several pigs, and many chickens. He carried on his side career of painting and became a ward attendant at Apple Creek Hospital which was nearby. As was said before, Floyd at an early age had wanted to pursue a medical career, but didn’t have enough money to attend the college.
In 1950, Pamela Noble was born to Dorothy and Clifford Noble. In 1951, Brenda Walmer was born to Harry and Mickey Walmer. On March 17, 1952, Patricia Noble was born to Dorothy and Clifford Noble, but she had heart problems (had a hole in her heart) and unfortunately lived for only 5 days.
In 1952, after Harry and Mickey graduated, the family moved to a cabin just outside of Benhams, Tennessee. Harry became a pastor in 3 churches. In July of 1954, Mickey gave birth to Timothy Walmer. In 1954, Randall Noble was born to Dorothy and Clifford Noble.
Below is the Clifford Noble family 1960
In August of that same year, Harry became the pastor of Calvary Community Church in Statesville, South Carolina where they had moved. In June of 1956, Clifford, Dorothy, and their children moved to Alabama where Clifford became a pastor in Ashland and later, Townley. It was in the fall of that year that Clifford was away in Pennsylvania and Dorothy got to preach a sermon. In 1957, Mickey gave birth to Mark Walmer. In 1957, Rodney Noble was born to Dorothy and Clifford Noble in the Newberry, South Carolina Hospital.
Clifford Noble, pastoral picture taken 1943
It was in July of 1959 that Clifford, Dorothy, and their children moved to Newberry, South Carolina where Clifford became a pastor there. In 1959, Clifford became the pastor of First Church of God. He was there until 1969. In all the churches that Clifford was a pastor of, Dorothy played the piano and/or organ, taught in Sunday school, in 1957, Floyd sold the cow and the chickens later in 1960. Meanwhile, also in 1960, John Walmer was born to Harry and Mickey Walmer in South Carolina. Floyd forcibly retired later that same year from his job at Apple Creek State Hospital at the age of 70. Clifford had a radio station, and was on the air for 12 minutes every Saturday. Sometimes, he even recorded and played the twins singing (they were about 15 or 16 then), with Dorothy playing the piano and sometimes singing. The hogs were finally sold in 1961, making Floyd Walmer officially retired from farming. He still made extra money by doing interior decorating. Floyd Walmer died in 1963 at the age of 73.
In 1967, Harry left the church and returned to Bob Jones University to get his Ph.d in school administration. After they realized that the commute was too much, the entire family moved back to Greenville, SC, where they presently live.
In 1969, after trying to maintain the farm, Edith Walmer had a stroke. The land was sold and Edith moved in with Virginia and Wayne Hunter where they took care of her until her death in 1980.
Somewhere in between 1996 and 1998, Clifford Noble retired. He and Dorothy lived in Warren, Ohio, right around the corner from First Church of God and attended there. They lived a quiet and nice life in a home.
Clifford and Dorothy Noble August 29, 1992
On Tuesday, August 3, 2004, Rev. Clifford Noble died presumably of heart failure. Dorothy was soon moved down to Georgia where most children live around 2006.
On January 15, 2011, she had a massive stroke while doing her devotions (the Bible was open to the book of Exodus) that left her right side paralyzed. Dorothy Lovenia Walmer Noble passed away at 3:15 A.M. on January 19, 2011. She had a beautiful funeral in Georgia with family and friends on January 21, 2011 and another funeral followed by a burial in Rittman, Ohio on January 23, 2011. She was 88 years old.