Obituary: Betty Jane ‘BJ’ Lahman

Betty Jane ‘BJ’ Lahman
Sept. 3, 1927 ~ Oct. 26, 2018

Betty Jane “BJ” Lahman, 91, of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, passed away peacefully at home on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018. BJ was born Sept. 3, 1927, in Warren, Ohio, to the late John A. and Freda (Zeyfang) Schwartz. She was married Dec. 22, 1950, to William Charles Lahman who preceded her in death Feb. 6, 2015. William Lahman was the co-owner and editor of Rangely’s weekly newspaper from 1949-1951 and Rangely town manager from 1951-1955. He later became the city manager of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, and the secretary-treasurer of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority covering all of Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, plus three adjacent counties with 2,000 employees. BJ was also preceded in death by brother-in-law Richard Keller.
BJ is survived by daughter Linda Kay Lahman (David Wood) of St. Louis, Mo.,; son Bill Lahman Jr. of Colorado Springs, Colo.; two grandchildren, Julia and Andrei; sister-in-law Carol Keller of Bucyrus; as well as nephew and niece Donald Keller and Karen Lutz both of Columbus.
BJ attended Heidelberg College, Tiffin, where she met her husband William. She received her Masters Degree from Kansas City Conservatory (violin) in 1960. BJ continued her graduate studies periodically in the United States and abroad from 1960 until 1973. BJ was the elementary music coordinator and music specialist in the Shaker Heights City School District from 1966 until 1989.
BJ was a member of the American Orff Schulwerk Assoc. (AOSA) for the first 50 years of its existence. She was instrumental in the spread of the Schulwerk across the United States. A co-founder of the Cleveland Area Chapter, she is remembered as a great motivator, always inspiring confidence with such phrases as, “You can do this.” She was a co-creator of the Orff at Orange workshop and a master of Orff Schulwerk educator who studied at the Orff Institute in Salzburg, Austria. BJ became a Distinguished Service Recipient of AOSA in 2001. She held memberships in numerous professional and academic associations. In retirement BJ was active in the Cleveland College Club with contributions including establishing a scholarship fund. She also spent many hours researching genealogy during retirement.
Funeral services were held on Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018, at 1 p.m. in the Munz-Pirnstill Funeral Home, 215 N. Walnut St., Bucyrus, Ohio, 44820, and the family received friends from noon until the time of the service. Burial will follow service in Brokensword Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Greater Cleveland Chapter AOSA, Lahman Fund, c/o Angie Perrine, Treasurer, 7568 Brookgate Way, Northfield, Ohio, 44067. Expressions of sympathy can be left at www.munzpirnstill.co
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