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Obituary of Elsa Ann (Bright) Wagner, 65


Elsa Ann Bright Wagner, a lifetime resident of State College, passed away at the age of 65 on April 5, 2018 at Mount Nittany Medical Center due to complications related to Multiple Sclerosis. Born November 22, 1952 in Bellefonte, Elsa was a daughter of the late Charles and Ethel (Bower) Bright. She was a 1970 graduate of State College Area High School, avidly participating in the State College Marching Band. In 1974, she received a dual Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and Child Welfare, graduating magna cum laude as a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society. She remained a lifetime member of the Penn State Alumni Association, and followed Penn State football with great fervor, holding season tickets and attending many away games in earlier years.

On June 1, 1985, Elsa married the love of her life, Stephen F. Wagner, who was not only her husband, but also her primary caregiver. The greater part of her professional career was spent at Children and Youth Services, starting as a Caseworker, and retiring after 24 years of service as a Casework Supervisor. After retiring from public service, she continued to teach preschool at Trinity Lutheran Church, where she was a charter member. Elsa was always steadfast in her belief in God, heavily leaning upon her faith to help navigate her through the uncertainties of her illness.

In her earlier years, she enjoyed travelling extensively throughout the U.S. and Canada with her parents and cousin Mitzy. In her later years she very much enjoyed visits from friends and former co-workers. Her greatest joy was found in spending time with her children, Katie and Zack, and her husband, Steve, who survive at home. The family would like to extend their sincerest thanks to the nurses of Medi Home Health, as well as the nurses and practitioners from Mount Nittany Medical Center for their care and compassion.

A visitation for family and friends will be held on Sunday, April 8th from 2-4 pm and 6-8 pm at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Millheim. The funeral service will be held at the church on Monday, April 9th at 11:00 am with Pastor Ronald Miller. Elsa will be laid to rest in Salem Lutheran Cemetery in Aaronsburg. In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Elsa may be given to Trinity Lutheran Church, 2221 N Oak Lane, State College, PA 16803.

Name of Deceased

Elsa Ann (Bright) Wagner



Date of Death


Date of Birth


Funeral Home

Steven R. Neff Funeral Home

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