Barbara Eleanor (Knouse) Mangels is safe in the arms of God having peacefully
departed on February 4, 2023, surrounded by her children, her grandchildren, and their
Barbara Eleanor Knouse was born in Lafayette, Indiana on May 5th, 1941 while World
War II raged in Europe, and the attack on Pearl Harbor was only months away. Her
parents were Dale and Eleanor Knouse. She was the middle child of three siblings, born
after Robert and before Becky.
The family soon moved to Pittsburgh, PA and Barbara grew up in the neighborhood of
Mount Lebanon. The family moved to Akron when Barbara was a teenager – a memory
she recounted as traumatic – because she had to leave all of her friends behind. But
Barbara rallied in her new school, Buchtel High School. She became the lead majorette
of the marching band. She also played clarinet, was voted “Best Dancer” and was
recognized for having the smallest waist! She thrived in the 50’s, and would attend her
beloved Ohio State University, pursuing a certificate as a Dental Hygienist, which she
would achieve. While at OSU, Barbara rushed and was inducted into the Kappa Alpha
Theta sorority, where she made many life-long friends.
Barbara was an avid figure skater, and was actively pursued by the Ice Capades where
she met and skated with Olympic Champion, Carol Heiss. Barbara was close to
committing to ice skating, when she met the man who would become her husband,
Louis A. “Bud” Mangels.
They began their life together on February 16, 1963. They had two children, Kirk and
Julie. They created a thriving home in Fairlawn, Ohio. Barbara would have dinner on the
table every evening at 6PM – an occurrence of such regularity that the family would sit
and talk around the table every night.
Barbara made many friends in Fairlawn, and truly enjoyed being the “First Lady” to her
beloved husband as he pursued and achieved many leadership positions – including
getting elected as the Mayor of Fairlawn.
Barb and Bud thrived in The Villages in their sunset years. They made many friends,
and went on many adventures together.
She was preceded in death by her father, mother, brother, husband and sister. She is
survived by her son Kirk Mangels; daughter Julie Mangels Tucker; and grandsons
Christopher and Matthew Rossmann.
She requested that her epitaph be “I HAD A GREAT LIFE.” And, indeed, it was.
We will all miss her so much.
A service for Barbara and her sister, Becky Campbell (who passed away during COVID
restrictions) will be held Sunday, March 19 at 1:00 PM at Hope Lutheran Church -The
Barbara wanted any donations to be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, or
Hope Lutheran Church in The Villages.
Wish I could be at her service, as it would be an honor. Still can’t believe that she has passed. Peace be with the family and always remember to call upon your “brother from another mother” whenever I can help.
Werner and Ruth Tammer
Werner and Ruth Tammer