Elaine R. Hechinger Kujawa
July 20, 1934 - March 29, 2021
Elaine Kujawa, 86, passed away Monday, March 29, 2021, at home surrounded by her loving
family. Elaine was born July 20, 1934, in Toledo, Ohio, to her parents Paul and Elsie (Osborne)
Hechinger. Growing up in Toledo, she was a graduate of DeVilbiss High School where she
played the clarinet in the marching band.
Elaine always had a love of music. In addition to the clarinet, she played the accordion and
taught herself to play piano. She was involved in every aspect of music in her church, from
singing in the choir, to playing handbells, and also playing the organ. She was a lover of all the
arts, as well as a patron of the Toledo Jazz Society and the Toledo Symphony Orchestra. She
enjoyed listening to many forms of Jazz, including Ragtime Rick’s Cakewalkin' Jass Band.
Elaine started her career at a young age working in her father's bakery (Paul’s Bakery) as a
cake decorator, a talent which she carried throughout her life. She enjoyed decorating
elaborate wedding cakes, birthday cakes for family and Christmas cookies. She worked at
A&P as a bookkeeper, and later supported her husband, Bernie, in their plumbing business as
the Bookkeeper and Secretary. She was quite a math whiz and was very detailed in everything
She was an amazing lady who was loved by all that had the privilege of being in her company.
She always showed remarkable compassion and dedication to her family. She was a loving,
kind and patient mother and would bend over backwards for her family. She travelled the world
with friends and family and loved to enjoy life by connecting family and creating many
wonderful memories. She will be remembered for her great sense of humor, kind eyes, warm
smile and generous heart. She always made everyone feel like family; she did so much for so
Elaine had a strong faith in the Lord. Her grandfather, Pastor John Osborne, served as Pastor of
Wauseon Church of God for 29 years. Her father, Pastor Paul Hechinger, was also in the
ministry, and Elaine often referred to herself as a PK (Preacher's Kid). She was an organist at
North Cove Boulevard Church of God for over 25 years. As a member of the Sylvania United
Church of Christ, she was involved in the Choir, the Handbell Choir, Women’s groups, Rotary
Luncheons, and served on the board of Trustees for the Church. Elaine and her husband
Bernie generously put their heart and soul into helping out with the various needs of the
church. She also developed strong lifelong friendships with her Investment Group and Bridge
Elaine somehow always found the time for her many activities. She especially enjoyed playing
games and cards with family and friends, and was super lucky at Farkle. She was affectionately
known as the "Farkle Queen."
Elaine and her husband Bernie were married for 55 years and both worked at her father’s
bakery when they met. Together, they had a passion for landscaping and flower gardens. Their
lush yard always looked like a picture from a magazine, with amazing flower pots on her deck
every summer. Each year they also created fantastic Christmas cookies to share with friends
Elaine is survived by her sons Jim (Debbie) Kujawa, Dan (Mia) Kujawa, and daughter Laura
(Rick) Smith. Also she is survived by her six grandchildren, Corey (Jennifer) Kujawa, Lindsay
(Corey) Ruetz, Nathan, Elaina, and Austin Smith, and Bennett Kujawa, and two
great-grandchildren Kurt Frank Kujawa and Serena Kujawa, sisters-in-law Marge Kujawa,
Phyllis Kujawa, and Nancy Hechinger as well as several nieces and nephews. She was
preceded in death by her husband Bernie, sisters Phyllis Warner and Carol Cowdrey, brother
Phillip Hechinger, parents Paul and Elsie Hechinger, in-laws Irene and Zygmund Kujawa,
brothers-in-law, Leonard Kujawa and Edward Kujawa.
Friends may call at the Reeb Funeral Home 5712 N. Main St, Sylvania, OH, Friday, June 11
from 4-8 pm. A Memorial Service will be conducted at Reeb Funeral Home Saturday, June 12
at 11:00 am.
Elaine’s family would like to thank Nicole Manger (RN) and Kristy Limberger at Michigan
Promedica Hospice for their loving care.
Those wishing to give memorials are asked to consider the Sylvania United Church of Christ,
Toledo Symphony Orchestra or The Greater Toledo International Youth Orchestra.
To send flowers to Elaine's family, please visit our floral store.