Athens - Sally Bidlack passed away at 3 a.m. on Feb. 1, 2021, in Athens, OH of natural causes following infection with COVID-19. She was born Sarah Estella Tufaro on April 27, 1925, the fourth child of Nicholas Tufaro and Mary Colson Tufaro, and lived on Scott Street in Niles, OH during her childhood. She graduated from Leavittsburg High School in 1943 and worked at Warren Tank and Boiler as a secretary.
There she met her first husband, Harry Wayne Gibson, a widower with three children in their early teens. Sally and Wayne were married June 3, 1944, in New Castle, PA and lived in Warren, OH where they raised six children, with the loving assistance of Sally's stepchildren, who her oldest daughter remembers as "the angels of my youth." Sally worked for the Social Security Administration beginning in 1961 as a clerk and over the next 26 years rose in rank. She moved to Cleveland in 1978 to become manager in the Parma office, and to Jackson, MI in 1981 to become regional manager where she worked until her retirement in 1988. Her husband Harry Wayne Gibson died on June 21, 1986. Sally met Roland Forrest Bidlack in 1988 and they were married the following year. They spent nine very happy years together until his death on Dec. 31, 1997. Sally lived in the Warren area until 2018 when she moved to Athens, OH to be near to her daughter, Susan.
Sally had many interests and skills. She was an accomplished seamstress, making many of her children's clothes; two sport coats she made for her sons have been passed down in good condition to her great-grandsons. Sally and Wayne shared a love of gardening and cooking. She enjoyed nature and traveling, and most of all her family. In a span of more than 50 years, she came to serve graciously as matriarch of a large, diverse and dynamic extended family that reaches from her hometown to 14 states and to Europe. Sally was active in several local organizations including the First United Methodist Church of Warren, the Fowler United Methodist Church, Warren Women's club, and the Packard Museum.
She was preceded in death by her mother, Mary in 1941; her father, Nicholas Tufaro in 1946; her older sister, Isabella in 1923; and brothers, Frank, Sam and Jimmy. Two stepdaughters from Harry Wayne Gibson's first marriage preceded her in death, Margaret (Eugene) Chalker in 2012 and Patricia (Robert) Stein in 2014. Her oldest son David Franklin Gibson died on July 3, 2006.
Sally is survived by her stepson, Harry Wayne Gibson, Jr of Edisto Island, SC; her children, Kathryn Barbour of San Francisco, CA, Deborah Jane Mackey of Youngstown, OH, Gary R Gibson of Warren, OH, James (Tina) Gibson of Apex, NC and Susan (Thomas) Quinn of Athens, OH; stepdaughter, Sharyn (Jeff) Barhoover of Westminster, CO, Lynda (Brightheart) Headrick of Loveland, CO and Mark (Jeanette) Bidlake of Plainfield, IL; as well as 20 grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and five great-great-grandchildren. Survivors also include Sally's beloved nieces and nephews, Patty Tufaro Frease, Linda Harding Tufaro, Danny (Irene) Tufaro and Joseph (Mary) Tufaro.
Sally was a powerhouse in her lifetime, who will be remembered by all who knew her for her indomitable will and exemplary support to her family.
In-person funeral services will not be held due to the COVID pandemic and a private family memorial service will be held at the convenience of the family. Arrangements are with Jagers & Sons Funeral Home, Athens. Please share a memory, a note of condolence or sign an online register at www.jagersfuneralhome.com. Sally Bidlack