Eleanor Schroeder Speers, 91, died in her sleep November 7, 2015, in her home at Meadow Lakes, Hightstown of complications following a stroke.
She is survived by her daughter, Rev. Mary Barrett Speers, of Setauket, New York; and her son, John Gorham Speers, of Paris, France.
Eleanor Speers was born on April 12, 1924, the youngest child of Harold Willmer Schroeder and Charlotte Droste Schroeder of Montclair, New Jersey. She graduated from Montclair High School and received a BA in sociology from Vassar College, having accelerated with the class of 1945-44 in order to serve in the U.S. Navy WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service) in World War II. She was posted to Atlanta, training Navy pilots in Link trainers until the end of the war.
In 1947, she married William E. Speers, Jr., also of Montclair,, to whom she was married until his death in 2006. The couple resided in Montclair until 1957, when they moved with their two children to Princeton. Eleanor Speers was an ordained deacon in the Nassau Presbyterian Church, volunteered in the Admissions Department of Princeton Hospital for many years, and served on the board of the Princeton YWCA. When the family moved to Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 1969, Mrs. Speers worked in the psychiatric care department at St. Joseph’s Hospital. Upon the family’s return to Princeton in 1976, she went back to school, obtaining her MSW from Rutgers University. Following this, she worked as a volunteer in the Adult Day Care Center of Mercer Street Friends in Trenton and served on the board of the Princeton Area Council of Community Services.
Eleanor Speers was quiet and thoughtful, but loved company, and enjoyed making new friends. She was always ready to welcome visitors with a cup of tea and a cookie, and particularly enjoyed singing around the piano at Christmas. Her love for people also found expression in her service as a deacon in Nassau Church. A lifelong lover of music, learning, and all things French, Eleanor played piano and recorder, and participated faithfully in adult education at Nassau Church. When she moved with her husband to Meadow Lakes in 2005, she continued to enjoy musical activities, and was an enthusiastic member of the conversational French group and the Meadow Lakes congregation of the First Presbyterian Church of Cranbury.
There will be a memorial service for Eleanor Speers at Nassau Presbyterian Church, 61 Nassau Street, Princeton, N.J. 08542, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, November 14, 2015.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to Mercer Street Friends (Trenton), Nassau Presbyterian Church, or the First Presbyterian Church of Cranbury (for its Meadow Lakes Ministry).
Mildred Louise Pearce of Griggstown, New Jersey and North Windham, Maine passed away at Stonebridge in Skillman on November 1, 2015. She was 88 years old. Born in Maine, she resided in Middlesex and Somerset Counties in New Jersey for 56 years.
Millie was raised in South Portland, Maine where she went to local schools, graduated from South Portland High School, and attended Westbrook Junior College (now the Portland Campus of the University of New England). Millie worked as a secretary for the Student Religious Association at the University of Maine, Orono, a secretary and cashier for Mutual Benefit Life Insurance, and a medical secretary at Maine General Hospital (now Maine Medical Center). She also worked several summers as a secretary at Camp Arcadia.
Millie was a member of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority for 65 years, the Masonic High Twelve Auxiliary of Milltown, and the Griggstown Historical Society. A long-time member of the Princeton YWCA, Millie was always up for any class they offered — canoeing, figure skating, tap dancing, synchronized swimming, even belly dancing.
Millie attended Princeton United Methodist Church and was a member of the Circle of Friends and United Methodist Women’s Group. She was also an affiliate member of the East Raymond Chapel in Maine.
Married to Albert “Frank” Pearce for 65 years, she spent summers on Sebago Lake in Maine. Millie was a loving and caring person who devoted her life to her family and friends. Millie is best remembered for her infectious laugh and love of sweets. She enlivened any party with her good-natured joking and is well-remembered for eating dessert first. On a two-week long trip to Russia, Millie brought two suitcases: One for her clothes and one for her candy.
Millie is survived by her daughter Jennifer Roffel and son-in-law Bill Roffel of California; and her grandchildren Douglas and Elena. Millie was predeceased by her husband Albert “Frank” Pearce; her parents Benjamin and Florence; her brother Perley, and her sister Eunice.
Visitation will be from 2 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, November 14 at the Princeton United Methodist Church, 7 Vandeventer Avenue, where a funeral will be held at 3 p.m. followed by a reception. A future memorial service will be scheduled for family and friends in North Yarmouth, Maine.
Memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association at www.heart.org. Click on the “Giving” tab, under GIVE “honor a loved one”, then search for a fundraising page by clicking “Find it Now.” Memorial is under Mildred Pearce.
Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, Princeton.