Nancy Lee Ross Long

Nancy Lee Ross Long, affectionately known as “Meme,” passed away peacefully at home in State College on Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014 surrounded by her loving family.  The daughter of Charles and Sarah Belle Myers Ross, Nancy was born Sept. 3, 1938 in Philipsburg. She spent her elementary school years in Snow Shoe and her high school years in St. Marys where she was a majorette, a cheerleader and the Valedictorian of the Class of 1956. She graduated from the State Teachers College at Indiana, now IUP, with a degree in Business Education. While there she was a member of the Pi Omega Pi Business Honor Society. Using her degree, she spent two years teaching in Mt. Union at Captain Jack High School. She then became secretary to the president of HRB Singer. At HRB, she met Ralph Long, who she married in 1964. After staying home for a few years to care for her two daughters, Nancy returned to the workforce at a preschool for handicapped children at Penn State. In 1979, she began to work for the Penn State office of University Development. She remained there for 20 years and retired in 1999 as Director of Gifts and Endowment. In the wake of 9/11, she felt the call to volunteer for the Red Cross and that is where she could be found every Thursday for the next 10 years. Aside from volunteering, Nancy kept busy in her retirement with reading, solving crossword puzzles, playing bridge, completing jigsaw puzzles, avidly following her granddaughter’s soccer career from Bellefonte School district through to Juniata College, and attending various shows, recitals, games and events of her other grandchildren. She was a rock who saw her family through the joy of graduations, marriages, births and other accomplishments and also through the sorrow of diseases and untimely deaths. She was a limitless source of strength, support, courage, compassion, graciousness and common sense to her family and those around her. She leaves her family and friends truly heartbroken.  Nancy is survived by her husband, Ralph Long of State College; her sister, Peggy Kraft and family of Naperville, Ill.; her daughter, Nancy A. Long; and grandchildren, Cody Long, who, as the oldest grandchild, had the honor of bestowing her moniker of “Meme,” Devin Kos, Kasey Long; and great-grandson Rylan Long, all of Bellefonte; and her daughter, Lesley Ward and husband, William, and grandchildren Elaina and Marisa Ward of Harrisburg.  Nancy was preceded in death by her parents; a brother, Charles Robert Ross; a son-in-law, John Bausch; and her granddaughter’s father, Kevin Kos.  Visitation will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014 at Koch Funeral Home, 2401 S. Atherton Street, State College.Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to the American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22718 Oklahoma City, Okla. 73123-1718, or to the charity of your choice in memory of Nancy R. Long. Arrangements are under the care of Koch Funeral Home, State College. Online condolences and signing of the guest book may be entered at