Margery Knight Kibler peacefully died in her home on Valentine’s Day, February 14th. She was born on August 6, 1929, in Erie, daughter of the late Herbert E. and Bess Chamberlain Knight.
She graduated from Academy High School in 1947 and the University of Rochester School of Nursing in Rochester, New York 1950.
Margery worked as a graduate nurse in the surgical unit where she met Dr. Charles E. Kibler, a surgical resident at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. Charles and Margery were married in Erie in 1951. After marriage they lived in Washington, DC where Charles worked for the Central Intelligence Agency as a medical technician during the Korean War. Thereafter they moved to Rochester, Minnesota where Dr. Kibler pursued a surgical fellowship at the Mayo Clinic. After his training the couple moved to Muncie, Indiana before moving to Erie, where Dr. Kibler maintained a surgical practice from 1958 until his death in 1979.
Margery is survived by four children: Charles, Jr (Jeannie), Kathleen, William (Judy), and Karen (James) and grandchildren Jessica (Jeff) Kridler, Jeremy, Josh, Clay, Carrie and great grandchildren Emma and Jackson. She is further survived by her nephew Gregory Knight (Susan) and niece Melanie (Rick) Mellon.
In addition to raising her children, she had a keen interest in civic activities in the Erie community. In the late 60s, the Erie public schools were in turmoil, educationally and racially. Parents of children in the schools activated an organization, the Committee for Better Schools (CBS) and Margery served as vice-president. The group at its peak was about 3,000 members who diligently worked to remove politics from the Erie Public School Board, and eventually succeeded.
For twelve years, Margery volunteered as a judge in the Northwest Pennsylvania Collegiate Academy competition held consecutively at Mercyhurst, Penn State Behrend, and Gannon. Students from 22 schools participated in testing, economics, super quiz, and interviews by judges. She participated in many study groups, as well as a book club for over 20 years, DLDL (Distinguished Ladies Discussing Literature).
In the early 80s, after her husband’s untimely death of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Margery helped to organize and co-found the Hospice of Metropolitan Erie (H.O.M.E.). Hospice programs were in place in other cities throughout the U.S. but had not yet come to Erie. There are now several Hospice programs in Northwestern Pennsylvania that have greatly benefited hundreds of families with loved ones who were terminally ill. Her work in Hospice continued for 22 years in bereavement counseling until her retirement in 2006. She was honored in 2003 by the Women’s Roundtable with a Letter of Recognition (Woman of the Year) for her involvement in Hospice.
She was an elder for three terms and a trustee at the First Presbyterian Church of the Covenant. Other memberships include Women’s Medical Auxiliary (now Alliance), P.E.O. sisterhood, Delta Sigma Sorority, and Junior League of Erie.
Margery was an avid tennis player, swimmer, and enjoyed biking and participating in a variety of athletic activities. She had many adventurous travels including white-water rafting on the Colorado River, and skiing in the Rockies and the Alps. She enjoyed traveling with her family to the Caribbean, Hawaii, New Zealand, Europe, and throughout the U.S.
Her genuine acceptance, concern, support, and kindness toward others are unparalleled and just a few of the many qualities that made her so well loved by family and friends. Margery will always be remembered as a loving and thoughtful wife, mother, and friend.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Dr. Charles E. Kibler, brother, William H. Knight, and sister-in-law, Estherlou Knight of Erie.
In lieu of flowers please send memorials to First Presbyterian Church of the Covenant at 250 W. 7th St, Erie, PA 16501.
Friends may call at Burton Quinn-Scott Cremation & Funeral Services West Ridge, 3801 West 26th St. on Friday, February 24th from 2-4 and 6-8 pm. Her funeral service at First Presbyterian Church of the Covenant is on Saturday, February 25th at 11 am with Rev. Chris Weichman and Rev. Keith Sundberg officiating. The service will be livestreamed at https://m.facebook.com/BurtonQuinnScott/.
Send condolences at www.BurtonQuinnScott.com.