Lorene Bangert Emmerson, 85, passed away peacefully at her home in Columbia, MO, on Thursday, September 16, 2010, after a long and courageous battle with Multiple System Atrophy. Friends and family will celebrate her life and honor her memory on October 30 at 1:30 PM at the University of Missouri Reynolds Alumni Center.
Mrs. Emmerson was born on September 24, 1924, in Zebra, MO, to Verna West and James Oscar Bangert. She married George C. Emmerson on July 1, 1955, in Marshall, MO, and he preceded her in death on December 25, 1979.
Mrs. Emmerson was a proud member of the Hickman High School Class of 1943. She was also a graduate of the University of Missouri, earning a bachelor's degree in biology in 1946, a bachelor's degree in education in 1948, and a master's degree in Psychology in 1951. As an MU student, she belonged to several scholarly organizations, including Sigma Xi, Sigma Pi Alpha, Alpha Pi Zeta and Psi Chi. She taught psychology, biology and general science at Marshall High School for 32 years. During the years she lived in Marshall, she was an active member of the local and state teachers' associations, the Saline County Mental Health Association, the Saline County Democratic Party, and Delta Kappa Gamma.
Mrs. Emmerson returned to Columbia in 1987 and, consistent with her belief that "keeping busy is the secret to a happy retirement," she began a second career as a full-time volunteer, giving countless hours of service to various organizations. She was one of the initial participants in the University of Missouri Medical School's Senior Teacher Educator Partnership, which connects medical students to senior citizens. In addition, she was a dedicated member of the League of Women Voters of Columbia-Boone County and, in 2009, the League honored her with the Eleanor Goodge Award for exemplary service. She was also an active member of the Boone County Democratic Party, which honored her in 2007 with the Margaret Morgett Lifetime Achievement Award. In 1993, the Columbia Daily Tribune honored her as a Volunteer of the Week for her service to a number of groups, including the League, Boone Hospital Center, University of Missouri Health Information Center, Central Missouri Humane Society and the American Cancer Society. In 2003, Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri named her an All-Star Volunteer in recognition of her support for reproductive rights and, in 2007, University of Missouri Health Care honored her as a Volunteer of the Month for her service to the MU Hospitals and Clinics. She was also an active member of the Jane Austen Society of North America, the Central Missouri Amateur Astronomy Club and the University of Missouri Alumni Association.
Mrs. Emmerson is survived by her sister, Ilene Bangert Ford, of Columbia, MO; her sister-in-law, Grace Emmerson Johnson (William) of Springfield, MO; and 15 nieces and nephews, Karalene Lynch (Thomas) of Waynesville, MO; James Prewitt (Jean) of Indian Wells, CA; Judy Mitchell (John) of Lititz, PA; Jack Bangert (Jeanne) of Leawood, KS: Terry Bangert of Chesterfield, MO; Bruce Bangert of Clifton, CO; Bob Bangert (Lennie) of Mack, CO; Sheilah Earl (Thomas) of Soldotna, AK; Jane Shaw and Joan Metcalf (Mark) both of Arvada, CO; Sharon Schattgen (Robert) of Columbia, MO; Karen Whorton (Gary) of Springfield, MO; Hank Johnson (Sally) of Neosho, MO; Robert Alfrey (Margaret) of Marshall, MO, and Thomas Alfrey (Sandy) of Blue Springs, MO. She also leaves behind a number of great-nieces and great-nephews and their children, many dear friends, and three beloved cats, Jeffie, Lollie and Beau.
In addition to her husband, Mrs. Emmerson was preceded in death by her parents; two sisters, LaVena Bangert Prewitt and Maxine Bangert; and three brothers, Athel Bangert, Keith Bangert, and Averill Bangert.
Memorials may be given to the League of Women Voters of Columbia-Boone County (1025 Hickory Hill Drive, Columbia, MO 65203); Central Missouri Humane Society (616 Big Bear Boulevard, Columbia, MO 65202); Columbia Second Chance (PO Box 10185, Columbia, MO 65205); or Happy Tails Animal Sanctuary (5900 South Rangeline Road, Columbia MO 65201).
Online condolences may be left at www.parkerfuneralservice.com.
Additional information provided per family recompense.