Agnes B. Howard, 97, a resident of the WCA Home, Temple Street, Fredonia, formerly of Forestville, passed away Friday, June 20, 2014. She was born in Cottage on August 16, 1916, the daughter of the late David J. and Mabel (DeRemer) Ball.
A resident of Forest-ville since early childhood, Mrs. Howard graduated from the former Forestville Free Academy & High School in 1933 and later from the former Dunkirk Business Institute. Mrs. Howard's first job was bookkeeper and secretary in the office of Dr. George B. Ubel of Silver Creek. In 1936, she returned to Forestville School as the first secretary to the principal that the school ever had. Soon, this job included being clerk of the Board of Education until 1946, when her late husband Merritt returned from service in WWII.
For the next 30 years, she worked with her late husband in their farm equipment sales and building construction business. Also, during some of those years, she and her late husband enjoyed raising and promoting Registered Polled Hereford Cattle. They were both active in State and National Organizations and in 4-H Livestock Activities. Rather than retiring at the usual time, she started a different job at the Chautauqua County Social Services Medical Accounting Office in Mayville. After six years, she returned to the Forestville Board of Education Office to work half-time as deputy treasurer until 2006, when she retired at age 90.
School history was her deep interest and for many years she served as historian of the Forestville Central School Alumni Association. The school bell purchased by the ladies of the village in 1845, has been a special item. It is a tradition now that the bell is rung to open the school year, just as it rang to open school each day until 1928. She was a member of the Forestville United Methodist Church, J. Carter Knapp American Legion Post #953, Ladies Auxiliary, Forestville, the Pioneer Social Club of Forestville, was Past Noble Grand of the former Grapevine Rebekah Lodge and Past President of NY Cattlemen's Woman's Auxiliary known as NY Cowbelles.
Survivors include three nieces Irene Maxson Waxham of Lexington, Kentucky; Grace Maxson Jones of Cattaraugus; Alta Maxson of Atlanta, Georgia; two nephews David R. Ball of Forestville; Roger D. Ball of Frewsburg; and 15 great nieces and nephews. Beside her parents she was predeceased by her husband Merritt E. Howard whom she married Sept. 10, 1935 and who died Dec. 6, 1992, by two sisters Alice J. Ball and Ina Ball Maxson and two nephews Charles Ball and Lee Max-son.
Friends are welcome to call at the Riles & Woolley Funeral Home, 39 Main Street, Forestville on Tuesday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m., from where Funeral Services will be held Wednesday morning, at 11 o'clock, with Rev. Bruce M. Ellis, pastor of the Forestville Wesleyan Church, officiating. Private Interment will be in Pioneer Cemetery, Forestville. The family suggests memorial donations may be made to the Forestville United Methodist Church, 3 Park St., Forestville, NY 14062. To post condolences go to the funeral home's website, rilesandwoolleyfuneralhome.com.