Rebecca "Becky" J. Herner, aged 62, of Bellevue passed away after a long battle with end-stage COPD on May 19, 2023. She was born on August 13, 1960 to the late Sarah Stradtman and John Herner in Norwalk.
Becky graduated from Trotwood-Madison High School. She then attended Wright State University for her Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and Urban Studies with a minor in Criminal Justice and Public Administration. After obtaining her B.A. she attended the University of Cincinnati College of Law for her Juris Doctor (JD). Becky had an active career in fighting for the "underdog" as an attorney. She started as an Assistant Public Defender in 1987 at the Seneca County Public Defenders Office and subsequently became the Director of the Seneca Co Public Defender's Office. Later, she accepted a position as an Assistant State Public Defender running the State's Public Defense County Outreach Program and served as legislative liaison to the Ohio legislature. Notably, She was appointed by the Ohio Supreme Court to serve on Ohio Sentencing Commission. As her career progressed, she was an Adjunct Professor at Tiffin University and an Associate Professor at BGSU. She also served as President of the Seneca County Bar Association and President of the Ohio Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys.
A few years after she brought her career back to Seneca County, she accepted the position of the Director of CASA in Seneca, Sandusky, and Wyandot counties. She often described her position at CASA as her "dream job". She was known throughout her law career and her life to fight tooth-and-nail for what she believed in.
In 1993 she married Michael "Mike" Hall at Zion Lutheran Church in Republic and immediately took on his 2 teen children as her own. They regard her as their 'bonus mom'. Years later, Mike and Becky had 2 children of their own. Despite only having 4 'legal' children, Becky was a strong maternal figure to many throughout her life. In her final weeks, many individuals reached out to her and described her as a second mother who loved them just as unconditionally as any other mother.
Becky enjoyed listening to and playing music, debating politics, gardening, and spending time with her kitties. She felt blessed to be the face of the CDC's Tips From Former Smokers Campaign. Her favorite campaign video can be found here. She encouraged anyone who was interested in quitting smoking to try the strategy that worked for her and said, "Whenever I had a craving, I said to myself, ‘I choose not to smoke today. Maybe I'll have one tomorrow, but today, I choose to not smoke.' Each day I continued telling myself that until I no longer had to."
Surviving are her life partner, Mike; her children, Bobbie and Nick Hall; her 'bonus children', April (JD) Green and Melanie (Jeremy) Yates; brother Joe (Terri) Herner; beloved sisters-in-law Robbie Herner and Tonya (Mike) Miller; step mother Suzanne Herner; step-siblings Greg Williams, Renee Reynolds and Christopher Ryan; her forever best friend Suzie Solomon; 8 grandchildren; 5 great-grandchildren; and countless aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, and extended family and friends that loved her so dearly.
She is preceded in death by her father John Herner, mother Sarah Stradtman, and brother Alan Herner.
Visitation will be held on Saturday, July 15, 2023 from 2:00-4:00 PM at the Herman-Karlovetz Funeral Home & Crematory, 900 North St., Fremont, OH 43420 with a memorial service beginning at 4:00 PM. The service will be live-streamed via the funeral home's website here.
Memorials in honor of Rebecca may be made to CASA of Seneca, Sandusky, and Wyandot Counties.