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School 10

Helen "Arlene" (Bowser) Irvin

May 30, 1932 ~ September 30, 2019 (age 87)

Helen “Arlene” Bowser Irvin, 87, formerly of Zanesville, went home to be with her Lord Jesus Christ on September 30, 2019.  She was born on May 30, 1932 in Glenford, Perry County, Ohio to Frank Harold Bowser and Frankie Louise Rath Bowser.  Her father was a long-time farmer; she adored her parents and spoke of them often even into her later life.

Arlene graduated from Glenford High School in 1950, second in her class.  She received a Bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University in 1955 in home economics education.  Thirty years later, in 1985, she received her Master of Science in Home Economics.

Arlene taught high school home economics for several years after graduating from OSU.  She married Charles Irvin on December 23, 1956.  After her children were of school age, she went back to work part-time as a nurse educator, teaching nutrition to nursing students at the Mid-Ohio Technical College.  She was chief administrator for many years of the Family Life Program, which provided homemaking and parenting education to disadvantaged mothers in multiple centers in a six-county area in Southeastern Ohio.  Later in life, she volunteered at Genesis Bethesda, and also enjoyed traveling with her husband and family, scrapbooking, cooking, sewing, and attending plays and concerts.  She was an active member of Coburn United Methodist Church her entire adult life.  She was especially proud of helping to found the Coburn latchkey program and also active in the American Association of University Women.  Her favorite role, though, was devoted mother of three and as a grandmother to eight.  Her husband, children, and grandchildren all adored her. 

Arlene is survived by her daughter Bonnie (Joseph) O’Neil, son Robert (Joan) Irvin, and son-in-law David Weidig.  She was extremely proud of her grandchildren, Lydia Irvin, Megan (Michael) Hughett, Emily O’Neil, Mary Weidig, Eric O’Neil, and Jillian Irvin and Joel Irvin.  All her grown grandchildren are in, or studying, professional areas of service, a testament to her legacy. She also has many loving nieces and nephews. 

She was preceded in death by her loving parents, her beloved husband Charles, her dear daughter Elizabeth (Beth) Weidig, infant granddaughter Adrienne Irvin, and her siblings John, Jim, and Audrey. 

Friends and family may call from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM Friday, October 4, 2019 at Coburn United Methodist Church, 3618 Maple Avenue, Zanesville, with services there at 1:00 PM, with Pastor Justin Williams officiating.  She will be laid to rest beside Charles at Zanesville Memorial Park. 

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Macular Degeneration Foundation ( or to Boys Town, Nebraska (, of which Arlene was made an honorary citizen in 2014 in recognition of her years of devoted contributions.

Dignified and professional services entrusted to BOLIN-DIERKES FUNERAL HOME, 1271 BLUE AVENUE, ZANESVILLE, OHIO.

To send a note of condolence, or to order flowers visit, follow us on Facebook, or call our professional staff at (740)452-4551.

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