Ada Athalee Stemple Nestor, 96 years old, of Washington Court House, Ohio died August 11 at St. Catherine’s Manor in Washington Court House, Ohio.
Ada “Beryl”, as she was known by her family, was born September 15, 1922 in West Virginia to Winfred Stemple and Ethel Freeman Stemple. She was the oldest of three children.
As a young child she lived and attended school in a West Virginia coal camp town. Later she attended school in Barbour County, West Virginia where she met her future husband, Edwin “Murl” Nestor on the school bus. After graduation from high school she attended Clarksburg Business College.
After the attack on Pearl Harbor and the U.S. entry into World War II she was recruited by a “nice looking” gentleman from the U.S. Government who was seeking women with strong math skills. She and others signed on not really knowing what they would be doing but knowing it paid better that any job at home. She moved to Washington D.C. and after training of several months duration she was assigned to an all-female unit with the U.S. Army Signal Intelligence Service working on deciphering Japanese secret code, the so called “Purple Code”. This piece of history was recently published in a book, Code Girls: The Untold Story of the American Women Code Breakers of World War II by Liza Mundy. Ada just this year received recognition by the U. S. Library of Congress for her civilian service as a "Code Girl”.
After the war she and Ed returned to West Virginia to begin life as small farmers but the GI bill opened an opportunity for Ed to go to college. Following graduation, they moved to Washington Court House in 1955 where their first home was a rear first floor apartment in what is now the Fayette County Museum.
Ada was preceded in death by her husband, Edwin, her parents, a son, Murl Jr., two brothers, Charles Stemple and L. Wilkie Stemple, and a grandson, McCabe Pfeifer. She is survived by three children, Peggy Nestor and her husband, Mike Blevins of Yellow Springs, Ohio; Marilyn Pfeifer and her husband, Moe of Washington Court House; and John Nestor and his wife, Amy, also of Washington Court House; six grandchildren – Mandy, Meghan, Andrew, McKenzie, Sarah and Anna - and eight great grandchildren. She was a member of Grace Methodist Church.
Private services will be held in West Virginia at a later date.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to Heartland Hospice at 2918 US 22 SE, Washington C.H., OH 43160 or Grace United Methodist Church at 301 E. Market St., Washington C.H., OH 43160.
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