We are deeply saddened by the passing of 
OPN Advisory Board Member
Margaret Meyer

Margaret and Bob Meyer at their daughter's wedding


MARGARET J. MEYER (nee Steele), age 72, went home to our Lord on June 24, 2011. She was the beloved wife of the late Robert C. Meyer, to whom she was married 42 years; dearest mother of Jennifer Demas (Michael) and the late Robert D.; devoted grandmother of Michael and Christopher Demas and Brandon and Bailie Meyer; most loved daughter of the late Agnes and David Steele; dearest sister of Ann Bluhm (John), Elaine Rosa (David) and Elizabeth Perry (Martyn); loving aunt and great-aunt to many. Mrs. Meyer was a lifelong advocate for people with disabilities. She was at the White House for the signing of the ADA Law in 1990, later met with President Clinton at the White House to discuss health care issues, and served on several advisory boards in the Cleveland area. Mrs. Meyer advocated for accessible buildings and transportation. She was inducted into the National Hall of Fame for Persons with Disabilities in 1999. Friends may call FROM 4-8 P.M. ON TUESDAY, JUNE 28 AT JACK MONREAL FUNERAL HOME, CORNER OF E. 320TH AND VINE ST., WILLOWICK. Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday, June 29 at St. Andrew's Byzantine Church, 5768 Andrews Rd., Mentor-on-the-Lake. Burial will be at a later date in Western Reserve Memorial Gardens Cemetery.

Published in The Plain Dealer on June 27, 2011


March 9, 1939 - June 24, 2011

The disability community has suffered a great loss with the death of Margaret Meyer, who passed away as a result of post-polio respiratory complications.

Margaret contracted polio at the age of seven. She used braces, crutches, and a wheelchair during her childhood, high school, and college. Later she used a power wheelchair in order to continue her active life style. After attending business college she worked for the Navy Department. In 1960 she married Bob Meyer, also a polio survivor, and they raised two children. Margaret was a full time Mom after her 
first child was born, but both she and Bob became active volunteers involving disability issues in the 1960s.

A list of some of her accomplishments follows:

She and Bob maintained the office of the Northeast Ohio Chapter of the National Spinal Cord Injury Foundation in their home, where she offered peer support, information, and referral to people with various disabilities and was editor of the Chapter newsletter.

She and Bob were part of the group who co-founded Services for Independent Living (SIL), the first independent living center in Ohio.

Margaret was on the Board of Directors and then was employed by SIL in the position Peer Counseling Coordinator and later became Program Director and for a time was Interim Executive Director.

She was an organizer and participant in the group who blocked buses on Public Square in order to obtain wheelchair accessible public transportation.

Margaret and Bob were present at the White House for the signing of the ADA in 1990.

Later she met with President Clinton to discuss issues facing people with disabilities.

She facilitated the first Greater Cleveland Post Polio Support Group.

She was inducted into the National Hall of Fame for Persons with Disabilities in 1999.

She fought for and lived out the concept of providing home based care, rather than being sentenced to life in a nursing home.

Aside from disability issues, Margaret was an artist and loved music.

One of the most important things in Margaret's life was her faith. She converted to Catholicism in 2006 and became a member of St. Andrew's Byzantine Catholic Church.

Margaret was married to the late Bob Meyer for forty-two years. She was the mother of Jennifer Demas (Mike) and the late Robert. She is also survived by four grandchildren, Michael and Christopher Demas and Brandon and Bailie Meyer.

Margaret and I have been friends since high school. She was a role model for me, showing me how to live life independently, and she was a true friend. She will be missed by many.        - Alice Sporar