Once more the golden cord has been severed,
the pitcher has been
broken at the fountain:
He who loved, heard the close, clear call
and pitched his tent far up the mountain side.
Elisha Austin Heath, eldest child of Daniel and Catherine Heath, deceased,
was born on Bristle Ridge, near East Liberty, July 20, 1850. He spent his
boyhood days on the Sheepback hills and attended there the country school.
On March 23, 1875, he was married to Mary C. Cochran, and thereafter for several
years lived near Middleburg. In 1890 he bought a farm in Tennessee.
The South seemed to charm him and he made his home there several years.
Coming back to Middleburg, he worked for a while by day's labor, finally
starting a restaurant and grocery, whereby his kindly, congenial disposition,
full of the spirit of fun and companionship, he made a large place in the hearts
of those who knew him.
He never planted a thorn in the pathway of friendship nor willingly trod upon the
lilies of love. Broken in health, he went to North Dakota, taking up a homestead
of 200 acres, and was there most of the time in the latter years of his life.
He was the father of six children, five of whom survive him. Bella Brownlee dying at
the tender age of three years. Mrs. Henry A. Butler, and Austin Elisha, of Youngstown;
Robert Bruce of Williston, North Dakota; George Clifton, and Elmer Orlando, of Middleburg.
One sister, Elizabeth Vanica has preceded him in death. Joseph Heath, of East Liberty;
Emma Fostor, of Middleburg, a brother and sister, survive, who with the children and
grandchildren and a host of relatives and friends mourn the loss.
In 1871 he became a member of the Wapatomica I.O.O.F and about 20 years ago the
Middleburg Encampment, being a member of both lodges at the time of his death.
In early life he became a member of the Disciple church in Middleburg, holding
steadfastly to that faith until the end.
Full of practical jokes he made friends wherever he went. This great loving soul,
with ears attached to catch the harmonies of heaven in the heart throbs of nature,
is not dead, for by our side walks sweet memories forever and ever. We may not
speak to him but we see his signal and wave back his answer.
The songs and sobs, the cheers and tears of friends, the myriad moods of
teeming life, the love glances and silent hand pressings were to him a message
that he read daily and was glad. When somber sorrow and silent grief bade him
walk with them he stumbled not, nor was he afraid. Life was a song of love and faith,
mingled with sunshine and rain. At last unto the Captain's hand he slipped his own
and fearlessly he sailed the unknown sea. Never again will we look into those
kindly eyes or feel the thrill of his magnetic presence.
Good-bye until morning comes again!
The shades of night being thought of pain,
But could we know how short the night,
That shields and hides us from the light,
We then would sing the glad refrain,
Good-bye, till morning comes again.
He departed this life at Williston, N.D., June 12, 1923.
Burial made in the Middleburg cemetery June 14, Rev. C. A. Freer officiating.