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Longtime Bath resident remembered for conservation efforts

6/20/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Kathleen Folkerth

Rosalie Steiner
Photo courtesy of Williamson Memorial Funeral Home
BATH — Rosalie Steiner, a longtime Bath resident who was involved with water and nature conservation efforts over the years and provided land for The University of Akron researchers, died June 11. She was 92.

Steiner died in Franklin, Tenn., where she had moved last year to be closer to her son Homer Steiner III.

Her son said he helped build the family home in Bath that was on 23 acres. According to the Trust for Public Land, Steiner and her late husband, Homer, opened the land to UA students, who used the Steiner Woods property for a long-term amphibian research study. Researchers documented 13 species of salamander — including thousands of spotted salamanders — that used the wetlands there during breeding season.

Trust for Public Land officials added that the Steiners wanted to ensure their land would be preserved for research and education. The trust helped them negotiate the sale of the property to UA in 2002 using funds from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency’s Water Resource Restoration Sponsorship Program.

According to the UA Field Station website, Steiner Woods features wetlands, ponds and woods adjacent to the southern edge of the Bath Nature Preserve.

Homer Steiner III noted that his mother did not have formal education in biology or environmental sciences, but she learned on her own.

“She was very, very much into water conservation and she did an awful lot on the local, state and national levels and won several awards for that,” he said. “She also wanted to preserve open land and the swamp land between the Bath Nature Preserve and her property.

“She felt that without clean water and without a good water supply, people and animals would eventually die out,” he added.

Family members also said she worked to establish the Bath Nature Preserve and she also developed the Bath Land Lab at Bath Elementary School to educate students on conservation, water and land use.

A memorial service for Steiner will take place June 29 at 1 p.m. at her former residence. There will be no parking at the property. Shuttle service will be provided from the Bath Elementary School parking lot, 1246 N. Cleveland-Massillon Road, and  Bath Church United Church of Christ, 3980 W. Bath Road. 

Homer Steiner III said the family asks that anyone wishing to make a donation in memory of Rosalie Steiner contribute to the UA Department of Biology. Checks may be made out to The University of Akron Department of Development, Akron, OH 44325-2603 to the attention of Rosalie Steiner Memorial.

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