Mrs. LaVarre Bickham passed away quietly at Broad Acres Nursing Facility in Wellsboro, PA on Nov. 27, 2017. Mrs. Bickham was born on Aug. 20, 1918 in Manito, IL (In August 2018, LaVarre Bickham would have been 100 years of age). Most of her childhood was spent in Crawfordsville, IN, graduating as valedictorian from high school there in 1935. Her family then moved to Portsmouth, OH.
She met there her husband to be, Howard F. Bickham. They were married in 1939, at the very end of the Great Depression and shortly before World War II. Early on they gave each other nicknames. He was Bick, and she was Sug (short for Sugar) and thus they were called by their friends for the rest of their lives. They lived most of their lives in Trotwood, OH, and attended Precious Blood Church. After Bick’s death, Sug moved to Centerville and lived at St. Leonard’s until shortly before her death.
Sug and Bick had three children: Stephen (Nancy) Bickham of Wellsboro, PA, Dianne (Jay) Bach of Centerville, OH, and John (Patricia) Bickham of Houston, TX. They had five grandchildren: Jennifer Bickham-Mendez of Williamsburg, VA, David Bickham of Boston, MA, Carl Bach of Centerville, OH, and Rebecca Bickham and Amy Baird of Houston. They had eight great-grandchildren and two great great-grandchildren.
LaVarre was a stay-at-home wife and mother until her youngest child was well into school age. She was employed in St. Elizabeth's Hospital where she began as a clerk in the Business Office and was quickly promoted to assistant to the hospital accountant. She finished her career at St. Elizabeth's as the personal secretary of the administrator and secretary to the Board of Trustees. In their retirement Sug and Bick traveled across the country, including driving to Alaska before the Alaskan highway was paved. Their annual highlight was a long canoeing, camping and fishing trip - just the two of them - up the various wilderness rivers of Ontario. They stayed in that wild environment a month or two, depending on the weather.
There will be a Mass of Christian Burial for LaVarre at Church of the Incarnation, 7415 Far Hills Avenue Centerville, OH, at 10:30 am, Saturday June 9, 2018. Burial of her ashes will take place immediately afterwards at Calvary Cemetery.