Johnson, Eleanor Mae Not long after the record breaking snowfall in April of 1920, the flowers of May began to bloom in Denver, Colorado, and on May 2nd, Eleanor Mae (Weidman) Johnson was born to Augustus Arthur and Ella Weidman. Eleanor led a very full life. At ten, her family moved to Kansas City for a short time and then on to Detroit, Michigan where she spent most of her young adult life. Eleanor was an intelligent and hardworking student. She was honored with a full scholarship to Vassar College upon graduating from Cooley High School where her favorite subjects were Latin, Math and Physics. Eleanor graduated from Vassar in 1942 majoring in English. She briefly worked for GM as a Labor Statistician during the war. GM had asked Eleanor to stay with the company and continue her education for an engineering degree as they saw the value of her intellect and work ethic. But although it was an honor to be asked, she chose not to pursue that path. Eleanor had met her future husband, Richard Johnson from Chicago, who was visiting Detroit while on leave from his duties as an Army Air Corpsman. After a brief engagement, they were married in Reno, Nevada in March of 1944. After the war, Richard was hired as a pilot for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. They moved to war-torn Holland, where they lived for 4 years before happily returning to the states and settling in Centerport, New York. It was there that they lived until 1972 and raised their two daughters, Celeste, now 60, and Christina, now 57. The family traveled extensively all over the globe with her as the primary voyage leader and trip planner. However, Eleanor's favorite trips were the winter skiing trips in the Alps. Not only did Eleanor help run the family's hobby business, Holiday Yachts, Inc., but she also pursued her Masters of English at Hofstra University. She was a Girl Scout leader for 7 years, member of the Centerport Garden Club, and enjoyed the summers at the Centerport Yacht Club, participating in many of the club's activities. She was very active in the Harborfield's School District PTA, was President of the School Board, and was pivotal in establishing a public library in Greenlawn for the community at large. Upon Richard's retirement in 1977, they moved to Stamford, Connecticut until 2007. It was not easy for Eleanor to be idle. She became the Business Manager for "Women In Management" in 1984, crafting the various news releases, activities and organizing meetings held by the very active corporate and professional women from New York City, Westchester and Fairfield Counties. Eleanor also enjoyed assisting in the numerous fundraising activities like the Christmas Walk for The Church of the Holy Spirit in Stamford. After Richard's passing, Eleanor moved to Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin where she enjoyed spending her golden years close to her granddaughters, Jessica and Jennifer Rush. Her spirit left us to join the Heavenly Father on July 26th, at the age of 94. Eleanor is also survived by her two younger brothers, William Arthur Weidman of Lansing, Michigan and Donald G. Weidman of Tucson, Arizona; along with her two daughters and their families. The family would like to thank all of Eleanor's extra caregivers from Season's Hospice for making Eleanor's last days at home so much easier and all of the prayers from our dear friends and neighbors. A funeral mass will be held at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, August 9 at St. Patrick's Parish, 15000 Wadsworth Rd., Wadsworth, IL. Info Wenban Funeral Home, Lake Forest, www.wenbanfh.com or 847-234-0022.
Wenban Funeral Home, Ltd.
320 East Vine Avenue Lake Forest, IL 60045
Published in News Sun from Aug. 2 to Aug. 8, 2014