On December 16, 1932, Gene was born in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, the son of the late Arthur N. Traxler and Cora E. (Swinehart) Traxler Bennett. He graduated from McCutchenville High School in the class of 1952.
Following high school, Gene was drafted to serve in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He served his country overseas, with one of his proudest achievements being when “he tamed a lion in Africa with a rattlesnake,” as his story went.
Upon his honorable discharge, Gene returned home to Wyandot County, where he worked at Swan Rubber Manufacturing Company. One of his co-workers helped line up a date for Gene and a young lady, Opal Spradlin. They met on June 3 in 1955, and the rest was history. Knowing they were meant for one another, they got married a month and a half later in Barnetts Creek, Kentucky. They cherished every minute of their sixty one years together, and lovingly raised three children.
For most of his career, Gene worked as a press operator for Tecumseh Products and Glen Wood Range Manufacturing, which became Amana. Lastly, he worked for many years for the Marion City Schools, retiring in 2008.
A man of faith, Gene was a lifelong member of the United Baptist Church. He also was a Mason, originally becoming a member in Lafayette, Ohio.
In his younger years, Gene had a love for hunting and fishing, a love he passed down to his sons, Lloyd and Chris. He also enjoyed tending to his vegetable garden every year. Gene’s favorite pastime though was bowling. He absolutely loved bowling, bowling every chance he got until he was no longer able last year due to his health.
A jokester, Gene loved to pick on everyone and that was his ornery way of showing you he cared. He had a charm about him, and his “happy go lucky” personality was contagious making everyone fall in love with him. He truly was a fantastic man, who never met a stranger.
Gene will be dearly missed by his beloved wife, Opal Traxler; three children: Debra (Ron) Craft, Lloyd (Brenda) Traxler, and Chris Traxler; seven grandchildren, two step grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren; two siblings: Harold (Joanne) Traxler and Carolee (Lawrence) Mullholand; a half-sister, June (Paul) Boyer; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Including his parents, Gene was preceded in death by his son-in-law, Jeff Alcorn; a grandson, Bruce Alcorn; a sister, Ruth (Ira J.) Moses; and two half-sisters: Lillian Lockhart and Bonnie Lee Moore.
Gene’s family will greet friends from 4 – 7 p.m. on Thursday, February 16, at the Snyder Funeral Homes, DENZER Chapel, 360 E. Center St., Marion, where Masonic services will be observed at 4 p.m. Services honoring his life will also be held there at 11 a.m. on Friday, with Elders Rutherford Blair and Harlan Burnett, and Brother Bob Ricketts officiating. His family will again greet friends for an hour prior to his services. Burial will follow in Grand Prairie Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to Marion County Veterans Services, 220 E. Fairground St., Suite 101, Marion, OH 43302, or to OhioHealth Marion General Hospital Hospice, 1713 Marion-Mount Gilead Rd., Suite 107, Marion, OH 43302.
Snyder Funeral Homes of Marion are honored to have been chosen to serve Gene’s family and your favorite memories and condolences may be shared with them by visiting www.SnyderFuneralHomes.com.