Penwell Turner Funeral Home - Shelby, Ohio

Sherri Anne Stewart

Sherri Anne (Berdanier) Stewart, 64, of Ontario went to her eternal home on Thursday, March 16, 2023.  She composed a symphony in this life full of faith, family and friendship. She finished her journey gracefully in the face of a 17-month battle with brain cancer.

Sherri was born to F. Nace and Doris A. (Baird) Berdanier in Newport, RI, on February 13, 1959.  Sherri wed her husband of 42 years, William (Bill) Stewart, on August 24, 1980.  Together they raised three amazing sons:  David (Cameron) of Tacoma, WA; James (Melodee) of Plainfield, IL; Kevin (Erica) of Fairborn, OH.

Growing up in Shelby, she graduated with the class of 1977 from Shelby Senior High School. Music was always her passion from early age, and she gave God all the glory for the gift He gave her. She began taking piano lessons while in grade school and took up organ as well as a teenager. While still in high school, she had her first organist positions at First Christian Church and her home church, First Lutheran Church.

Sherri attended The University of Akron where she earned her Bachelor of Music in Music Education in 1982.   Throughout her life, she taught music privately while also serving in churches and military chapels across the country and in Germany. Her musical talents were diverse:  pianist, organist, flautist, choir director, and teacher. She impacted many children’s lives with her gifts, and not just musically, taking on many students others deemed too difficult to teach.

Her love of children was also apparent in her everyday life with her kids. She was the epitome of the soccer mom. She was a mother figure not only to her own children, but all of their friends. No matter what country, state, house, apartment or school, she was present and involved. She hosted after prom dinners, team get togethers, Risk and Monopoly benders. She always knew the details and made sure everyone felt welcome and seen for who they were.

After returning to the Shelby area in 2004, she served in music positions at multiple area churches, most recently at her home church, Crossroads. She also continued to teach piano privately. Sherri also pursued a long-delayed interest in accounting at North Central State College. This degree allowed her opportunity to serve in financial assistant positions at Ontario Free Methodist Church and Richland Pregnancy Services.

Sherri always had a passion for teaching and serving children. She was blessed to join Crossroads missions teams to Cambodia in 2015-2017. Through these missions she was able to serve the families at orphanage homes sponsored by Crossroads in partnership with Asia’s Hope and met “her” sponsored children. Her heart for missions was also evident in her service to the Crossroads Annual Christmas for Kids. Here she applied her new-found interest in Cricut craft, joining the team making custom gift tags for over 1000 children annually.

Always busy with a new creative endeavor in her free time, Cricut added yet another tool for her handiworks. Sherri exceled in almost anything creative including quilting, crocheting, and cake decorating. She could often be found mapping out her next custom quilt for a family member or baby gift. Her family’s homes will always be filled with afghans that she lovingly crocheted for them.

In addition to her husband and sons, Sherri is survived by grandchildren: Nace, Aribella, and Weston Stewart; brothers Barry (Pam) Berdanier of Lafayette, CO, Bruce (Melinda) Berdanier of Ontario, and Brian (Marianne) Berdanier of Spring Lake, MI; sister-in-law Shari (Paul) Alfrey of Shelby; “adopted” foreign exchange sister: Gundi Osswald of Stuttgart, Germany; and numerous nephews, nieces, aunts and friends.

Sherri’s family would like to express their heartfelt thanks for the compassionate care provided by her care teams at Avita Health System, OSU’s The James Cancer Center and CenterWell Home Health.   Amber, Julie, Kristen, Megan, Nicole and Sarah … you really touched Sherri’s heart.   We also appreciate the Crossroads Church and Oakstone neighborhood family who provided steady physical and emotional support to Sherri throughout her journey.

Family and friends are welcome on Tuesday, March 21, 2023 from 4-7 pm at the Penwell Turner Funeral Home, 168 West Main Street, Shelby. Funeral services will be on Wednesday, March 22, 2023 at 11 am at Crossroads Church- Ontario Campus, 636 Lexington Springmill Road South, Mansfield, Ohio 44906. Guests are also welcome to visit one hour prior to the funeral at the church from 10-11 am. Pastor Dave Vance will officiate the services with burial following in Oakland Cemetery, Shelby.

In lieu of flowers, the family would ask you to consider a donation to a charity dear to Sherri’s heart and calling:  Asia’s Hope, 296 W Fourth Ave., Columbus, OH 43201; Richland Pregnancy Services,1560 W Fourth St., Mansfield, OH 44906; or The Ohio State University Neuro-Oncology Novel Therapies and Research Fund via their website,, Fund Number: 314420.

For those unable to attend, condolences may be left on Sherri’s obituary on the funeral home’s website,, or their Facebook page,

To view Sherri’s tribute video, click the link provided:

Memories & Condolence

  1. Raina Neal says:

    Such a lose to this world, we grieve with you for this, but also know, we join in celebrating her homecoming with Jesus. Sherri spent time teaching several of my kiddos piano, and I can attest to her generous spirit.
    With love Jason, Raina, Weston, Owen, Rylynn, and Neal family.

  2. Micah skinner says:

    Im so sorry for your loss. Mrs Stewart taught me to play the piano when i was 6, and it altered the course of my life in such a dramatic way. She was an amazing piano teacher. I still have my piano books from then. Learned so much from in her in a short time.

  3. Danni Martin says:

    Dear Bill,

    Sherri was one of the sweetest persons I ever knew. I am so glad I got to see her last week. I am praying for strength for you and the boys.


  4. Anne Seifert says:

    Praising God for Sherri’s legacy and praying for your family. May God bless you through many special memories.

  5. Dave and Marcia Jurcsisn says:

    We are deeply sorry to hear of Sheri’s passing. What a lovely, talented, warm, sweet woman she was. Our families spent a few years in Dayton as neighbors. It was our pleasure to get to know her and Bill and the boys. We’ll always remember the day that James (I think) disappeared: the searching, the heart-pounding worry, and then discovering him asleep nearly hidden under his crib. I remember Sherri sewing and helped a little with one of her quilts. I remember her playing organ in a local church. She was a blessing to her family and to God’s family. She served and lived her life well. Again, we are so sorry for your great loss.

  6. Manuel & Mary Rogers says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you during
    This very difficult time. Pray you feel the
    Strength of our God to carry you you through
    These next days

  7. Julie Ensman says:

    My thoughts and prayers to Sherri’s whole family. I have known Sherri since high school and always admired her many talents. Brain cancer effected our family as well, losing my husband in 2008. Let’s hope and pray for more advancements in a cure for this dreaded disease.

  8. Darlene Littleton says:

    What a sweet and gentle person Sherri was to know, she will be so missed. We knew her through Crossroads church and were sorry to know she was going through a difficult illness, we prayed often for her healing. We are lifting her family in prayer now and sending our deepest condolences.

    Mark & Darlene Littleton

  9. Mic Kempf says:

    To Bill and family-

    It was with great sadness that I learned of Sherri’s passing. We all graduated together in the SHS class of 1977. I remember Sherri as being bright, friendly, upbeat and accomplished at practically anything. You have my most sincere condolences, knowing how greatly that she will be missed. My family will keep you and your family in our thoughts and prayers.

    The Kempf family- Mic, Jo, Peyton and Paige

  10. Molly Tuemler Dodge says:


    My heartfelt prayers to you and your family. May Songs of the Angels welcome Sherri home. She was a true friend.

  11. Jari Amburgey says:

    Bill, Shari, Paul & Family…I am so sorry for your loss. Your family will be in my thoughts and prayers. May God comfort you in the days ahead.

  12. Cindy Roseberry says:

    What a beautiful human being. It was such an honor for me to call her my friend. My thoughts are with her wonderful husband Bill, sons and grandchildren. She will be truly missed. Suffer no more my precious friend.

  13. Tracy Laudermilk says:

    Sherri was a friend to all who had the pleasure to know her. Although I know she’s now with her Heavenly Father, I am grieved by this world’s loss….she was such a bright light in a dark world. I am praying for comfort for Bill and the family….until we are all reunited.

  14. Anthony Walker says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this difficult time.

  15. Sam & Lisa Carbaugh says:

    We felt deep sorry learning of Sherri’s health struggle and passing. Sherri and her boys meant so much to us and our sons at our Air Force assignment in CA. When later we could meet up in Ohio and at special events, it was always a pleasure to see Sherri and her happy smile. So much more to her that I’ve learned from this memory page. Our deepest sympathies to Bill, the boys and their families, and Sherri’s friend Susan. A sad void to so many lives but what an incredible life of sharing her talents, serving and caring of others.
    God’s peace.
    Sam and Lisa Carbaugh

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