Keeping Face for you: Eleanor Ruth Cernek: RIP 7/16/10
Eleanor was a fierce, passionate, strong and loving woman, true to the zodiac sign of Leo she was born under. She was a loving, wife to Martin, Mother of 4, NanNa of 4, and Great Nan to 2.
She was a dedicated volunteer to many causes true to her heart. If we as children didn’t find her home we needn’t look any further than St John’s. The children of St John’s school knew her as “Mrs.C” the hotdog lady, a second grade CCD teacher; she was a constant fixture at St John’s School. The many rummage sales, Barn dances, Craft Fairs, Penny Auctions, are too numerous to count, but everyone could count of Eleanor helping in one way or another. She had a nightly ritual of crocheting, and would donate her Afghans for these sales. She was the president of the Rosary Society several times, where she organized fund raisers of various and unique opportunities, one I remember well was her Lever-brother’s soap testing. So if any of you use “All” detergent our family tested it.
When Father Tom need help to thank the altar boys, Eleanor suggested taking them for a picnic to Interstate Park. There she cooked hot dogs and hamburger, while Father Tom would play ball or assisted them in fishing or crabbing in the Hudson River.
She was a den mother for the boy scouts, and leader to the girl scouts. She always had wonderful crafting ideas for the children. She would get Ivory soap for the boys to carve, and would teach the girls how to crochet along with other activities. She worked hard for both the boys and girls to achieve their unique badges, which would include marching in the parades, and hikes at Palisades Interstate Park.
The local Kids of 4th avenue were special to my mother and father. Having the deli, and working 6 days a week, my father would always take Eleanor and the children on outings every Sunday after church. They would go to Lake Welch, Bear Mountain, and Interstate Park just to mention a few places. They would include many of their children’s friends along for the fun. The more the merrier was their motto. We were never short of space for anyone who wanted to come along. They loved sharing their love with all. After the passing of Marty, in 1977, Eleanor ran the deli and the Kids of 4th Avenue would look out for her when she closed the store at 10PM. No one was allowed to mess with Mrs. C. I know she was thankful in having them hang out on that street corner keeping her safe.
Eleanor loved the beach. She was fortunate enough to have a small place in Toms River to call the summer home. Summer would start early the years she owned the house. We would open the season on Mother’s Day each year celebrating Motherhood. Eleanor, my sister Jane and I would have wonderful time on Mother’s Day at the beloved beach house. Most of the Mother’s Days in my memory were warm and sunny walking along the sand, and along the boardwalk of Sea Side. Even if you needed a jacket it was a warm and loving day we spent together.
Eleanor would open her summer home to many people throughout the years she owned it.
The small private beach on the bay at the end of the Gary Road in Toms River was home for my sons Sean and Dennis and my nieces Ellyanne and Jennifer for their summers. Eleanor taught them to swim, build sand castles; crab and fish along with letting them grow up into the wonderful adults she was so proud of. I believe they would call her awesome.
We would not stop going down to Toms River well into the early winter. We loved to walk along the boardwalk during the Christmas season. Cold and bundling the grandchildren in snowsuits, we walked and walked and walked. Eleanor was an avid walker all of her live, I believe that is what keep her slim and trim.
The numerous stories each one of her family and friends have are laced with love and kindness that was genuine and unique from only Eleanor.
I believe she is now at peace with the only man she ever loved, my father Marty. They are now together again, watching over all below with love.
We were blessed to have had Eleanor as Mother, and Grandmother and friend in our lives, and we pray that God welcomes her into heaven with open arms.