Anne Herzog-Sawyer-McMahon, 91, of Noble Horizons, Salisbury, CT, passed away, Wednesday, October 26, 2016.
Born September 17th, 1925 in Smethport, PA to Lawrence and Agnes (Barry) Herzog, and was the youngest of 6 children.
A longtime resident of Bradford, and member of Saint Bernard’s Church.
Anne followed in the footsteps of her mother and graduated from college with a degree in elementary education. Kindergarten was “her grade”. It gave her permission to perennially be the kid she was on the inside. Anne was deeply dedicated to her young students and her silliness, youthful zest and indomitable sense of humor made her years spent in the classroom memorable ones. Anne taught in the Bradford, PA and Olean, NY school systems.
One winter’s evening a few days before Christmas, when Anne was in her late 60’s and long retired from teaching, she received a telephone call from one of her former students. He was 35 then, had been to college and was established in a successful career. He just wanted her to know that, after all those years, she was still the best teacher he ever had.
Anne married Harley Sawyer, her college sweetheart, a few years after graduation. They had three children together but the marriage didn't last. It was not easy raising three kids on a teacher’s salary, but overriding all the difficulties was Anne's deep, demonstrative, palpable devotion to her children. We were aware every single day how much we were loved.
When Anne was in her early 50’s and her children grown, an old childhood friend looked her up while visiting his mother in Smethport. As children they had only been friends and classmates, but as mature adults their rekindled friendship quickly turned to love, and they were married about a year later in Athens, Greece. Jim McMahon was a petroleum engineer and a consultant to the government of Kuwait. So Anne, who hated the hot weather, followed her new husband to one of the hottest places in the Middle East. Those first years in Kuwait marked the beginning of a life of adventure and globetrotting. They ended up settling in Pittsburgh, where Anne learned to enjoy football and became an avid Steelers fan. They had a blended family of 12 children, and were deeply, madly in love until the day Jim died at the age of 85.
Anne was always happy, had a smile for everyone, never ever complained or utter a harsh word. To her, every single day was a gift and the fact that you were around to enjoy it was cause to give thanks.
Anne is survived by her three children and their families: Sheila, John and Amanda Lees of Salisbury, CT; Pamela, Frank and Nicholas Rockwell of Sharon, MA; and Jeffrey, Debbie Sawyer of Venice, Florida and daughters Brittany and Lindsay Sawyer of Pittsburgh, PA. She also leaves behind five stepchildren and a whole host of step-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
We celebrated her life in many ways while she was here with us, and at her request there will be no memorial service now that she is gone. Those wishing to remember Anne in some way can do so by making a donation in her name to Noble Horizons, 17 Cobble Road, Salisbury, CT 06068 Attn: Caroline Burchfield.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Hollenbeck-Cahill Funeral Homes Inc.
Online condolences may be expressed at www.hollenbeckcahill.com