Cover photo for Melanie V. "Mel" Rathbun's Obituary
Melanie V. "Mel" Rathbun Profile Photo
1941 Melanie 2019

Melanie V. "Mel" Rathbun

May 4, 1941 — December 14, 2019

Melanie V. Rathbun    “beloved wife, mother, grandmother and sister”

CHRYSTAL, Pa.---Melanie V. “Mel” Rathbun, 78, of Chrystal, passed away surrounded by her loving family on Saturday, December 14, 2019, in Robert Packer Hospital, Sayre, after a short illness.

Born on Sunday, May 4, 1941 in Shinglehouse, she was a daughter of Lewis and Emily Trask Voorhees.  On December 31, 1958 in Arlington, Virginia, she married Howard H. Rathbun, who survives.

Mel was a graduate of Oswayo Valley High School in Shinglehouse.  She was employed by Olean Advanced Products for over 30 years, where she was a member, former vice president, and former union steward for Local IBEW in Olean. She was also co-owner of Rathbun Farm Maple Products in Chrystal. 

Mel attended and was a Sunday school teacher at the Chrystal United Methodist Church.  For many years she served as secretary for the Eleven Mile Cemetery in Chrystal.  She enjoyed bird watching, hunting, baking, wood carving, and photography.  Her greatest joys were her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

Surviving besides her husband of over 60 years are her daughter, Paula L. (Gerald) Weber of Chrystal; her son, Howard S. “Duffy” (Ann Marie) Rathbun of Chrystal; six grandchildren, Emily M. (Kabel) Kellogg, Sally L. (Kendal) Karr, Forrest H. (Nikki) Rathbun, Paul A. (Emily) Rathbun, Stephanie J. (Zachary) Good, and Rachel M. Rathbun; seven great-grandchildren, Karter, Wyatt, Anna, Landry, Jake, Lily, and Melanie; her brother, John (Bobbi) Voorhees of Hillsboro, N.H.; a sister-in-law, Mary Sue (Dave) Shemeld of Cuba, N.Y.; and several nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents, Mel was predeceased by an infant son, John Hull Rathbun; her sister, Jacqueline Voorhees Carpenter.

Private funeral services will be held at the Virgil L. Howard Funeral Home, Shinglehouse, with the Rev. Russell J. Horning, pastor of the First Baptist Church, Shinglehouse, officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Shinglehouse Volunteer Ambulance Association, PO Box 98, Shinglehouse, PA 16748.

Mel’s family has entrusted her care to Kevin J. Dusenbury, funeral director/owner of the Virgil L. Howard Funeral Home, Shinglehouse.

To express condolences or share a fond memory of Mel, please visit or the funeral home Facebook page, Virgil L. Howard Funeral Home.


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Melanie V. "Mel" Rathbun, please visit our flower store.


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