Our Mother Mildred Witmer Fake

This Mother’s Day post is dedicated to our mother Mildred Elizabeth Witmer Fake, 1916 -1977. This Memorial message is from all three of our mother’s sons- Jay Dennis Fake 1950-1988, Ray Edward Fake 1942-, and Ronald L Fake 1940-, author of this message.

Mother spent her entire single life living at the same house near Windsor Boro, York County, Pennsylvania. At age 21 she married our father Nathaniel Edward Fake fresh off the family farm. He was 22 years old.

They first lived in East Prospect Boro, and later with two young sons moved to Dallastown Boro. Ronald started elementary school in Dallastown. Next, we moved to a larger house on Main Street in Dallastown. We young boys were active with friends which caused worry for our mother about safety issues crossing a busy street. Mother would constantly warn us about crossing Main Street and stopping a transit bus.

In 1947 our father made my mother happy when we moved to a small farm on Tracey Schoolhouse Road in Hellam Township, York County, Pennsylvania.

Witmer Family Home

Our Mother’s parents are George Washington Witmer 1882-1960 and Minnie May Snyder Witmer 1877-1940.

Her parents George and Minnie were married at Craley Pennsylvania on the 12th day of June 1902 by the Pastor of United Evangelical Church C.W. Hipple.

Her father George purchased 2 lots in 1907 near Windsor Boro where one lot shared a boundary with Brillharts School. Later George built a home for the family where Mother and her son Ronald were born.

Mother’s Birth

Mildred Elizabeth Witmer was born on November 14 in 1916, at the family home located near Windsor Boro in Windsor Township. Mother was delivered by the family doctor. 

At the birth of Mildred her father George was 24, and her mother Minnie was 19.

My mother’s siblings include one sister Pauline M Ferree 1902-1960, one brother Russell W Witmer 1909-1991; and two stepsisters- Stella C Rider McGurk 1895- and Effel Rider Eberly 1897-1987. 

Mothers School Brillharts 1878-1950

Mother was very fortunate that her one-room schoolhouse Brillharts was located next door to her parent’s house on Route 624.

Mildred E Witmer Brillharts School  class  1931
Mildred E Witmer 1931

Our mother’s school photo was taken in 1931 when she was 15 years old. This information suggests that she was in eighth grade. 

Marriage and Family

On June 11th, 1938, Nathaniel Edward Fake and Mildred Elizabeth Witmer entered into Holy Matrimony with Pastor Darnell. The service was held in Denver, Pennsylvania. On the date of the wedding, my father was 22, and my mother was 21.

Marriage of our parents Nathaniel E Fake and Mildred E Witmer on June 11th, 1938
Mildred E Witmer and Nathaniel E Fake

The mothers and fathers of the bride and groom witnessed the ceremony. Mrs. Minnie May Witmer 1887- 1940 and Mrs.Rosie May Fake 1892-1964, George Washington Witmer 1882- 1960, and  Kurvin Edward Fake 1887- 1959. 

Our Mother, Father, and Family

My father and mother’s first home was in East Prospect, Pennsylvania, about two miles from his parent’s farm. Nathaniel attended night school to learn mechanical drafting. The drafting knowledge helped our father obtain a job with C C Kottcamp mechanical contractors in York, Pennsylvania. He retired from sheet metal fabrication at Kottcamps in 1978 at age 62.

Ronald Lamar Fake Birth

The family of three sons kept my mother very busy. First, the writer of this memorial, Ronald Lamar Fake, was born on March 29, 1940, at his grandparents Witmer’s house on Windsor Road near the borough of Windsor. The attending Doctor was B.A. Hoover.

Unfortunately, my grandmother, Minnie passed away on November 2, 1940. The only recollection of her is from photographs.

Ray Edward Fake Birth

Our father Nathaniel was 26 when brother Ray Edward Fake was born on June 1, 1942, in East Prospect, Pa. Sometime after the arrival of Ray, my parents moved to the borough of Dallastown where two of my mother’s sisters, Effie Flinchbaugh and Pauline Ferree resided. Ray and I attended Dallastown Elementary School and made friends in the neighborhood. Here we played cowboys and Indians in the cornfield behind our house.

Jay Dennis Fake Birth

At age 34, Nathaniel and Mildred became the parents of a third son Jay Dennis Fake 1950-1988. Jay was born in the Columbia Hospital, located in Columbia, Lancaster County Pa. Mother had a lot of responsibilities with the new baby. The great thing Ray and I were self-reliant and did not require extra care.

Our brother Jay passes away at age 38 from the complications of skin cancer. His final resting place is the Fairview Cemetery, Wrightsville, Pennsylvania.

Family Farm Hellam Township

In 1947 we moved to a small farm located on Tracey School House Road in Hellam Township, York County.  Our new home was about one-half mile from my father’s sister Amy Fake Leiphart 1921- 2009 and our uncle Levere Leiphart 1918- 2011. Ray and I frequently visited our first cousins Leonard and Dean Leiphart to play games or watch TV on their new 13-inch Motorola.  

Ronald attended a one-room school with one teacher Mrs. Myers teaching six grades. His grade was second with two fellow students. The following year, we went to a brand new elementary school in Hellam.

Our Mother, family Farm, and Home Chores

Our father could capture his farming roots here on the new farm with two inexperienced assistants, Ronald and Ray. Early on, the farm needed a lot of attention, like clearing brush and moving large rocks with the Allis Chalmers tractor. Later our father, with some assistance from us, started growing sweet corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes, strawberries, watermelons, cantaloupes, and other vegetables for home use and sale to customers. We raised chickens for fresh eggs and hogs for butchering in the fall

Our mother’s Domain was the home. She would take care of all the household chores with assistance from Ray or myself. On short notice, my mother would decide chicken was on the menu for supper. My job was to catch the chicken, cut its head off with an ax, and prepare it for cooking- pluck lots of feathers. On the table, the chicken tasted great. In addition mother’s chicken corn soup, beef, pork, and hog maw were outstanding. 

Ray and I always had chores to complete after school or during summer. Also, we were encouraged to work jobs away from home to make extra income. 

Our father would have numerous projects underway in various stages, working towards completion. I remember the remodeling of the kitchen, which took months. This project wore my mother’s patience thin.

Canadochly Family Church

My parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents have always worshiped at a church with Canadochly as part of the name and located near the intersection of East Prospect Road and Wrightsville Road in Delroy, York County, Pennsylvania. 

Our mother Mildred Elizabeth Fake was confirmed into Canadochly Evangelical and Reformed  Church by Rev. Wayne Lutz on June 29, 1941. 

Our family regularly attended Sunday school and church services. Nathaniel served on numerous committees. Later in life, our mother’s diabetes impacted her regular attendance.

Our Mother Mildred Elizabeth Fake passed away at age 60 on September 29, 1977, from complications of long-term diabetes. Her final resting place is Canadochly Church Cemetery.

Life Experiences from Our Mother and Father

Reflecting on our life experiences with our Mother and Father’s guidance was refreshing. When you are growing up as a citizen in today’s world, you almost always believe that your parents are too strict in their discipline. I am very thankful that my Father and Mother set the gold standard in these areas: principles, character, work ethic, and a sense of caring and giving beyond the immediate family.

You can read the Ancestry Post recognizing Father at Our Father Nathaniel E Fake on June 18, 2022.

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Ronald L. Fake

Pennsylvania native from York County. After graduating from Wrightsville High School enlisted in U.S. Navy. While in the Navy working in the field of Aviation Electronics decided to enroll in college. Selected San Diego State University with a focus on urban geography and environmental studies. After graduation in 1968 worked with county and state governments, and private industry on the environmental impacts of transportation projects. After retirement started my ancestry research and today I am writing that history as a blog at https://ancestryeuropetoamerica.com.