Mary Tierney Ernst

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Mary Tierney Ernst

AGE: 92 • Verona

Mary Tierney Ernst, 92, of Verona, N.J., a retired Staten Island Advance employee and longtime Grasmere, Staten Island, NY resident died Friday, Feb. 8, 2013 at home. Born Mary Tierney in Bayonne, the oldest of eight children, she summered with her family in Graham Beach before they moved to Grasmere in 1939. Since 1961, the family continued to enjoy the shore during the summers in Lavallette. She relocated to Verona in 1987. Mrs. Ernst worked for 18 years at the Staten Island Advance Grasmere offices, first as a proofreader, and later in the classified advertising department. While at the Advance, she also worked on the Advance Women of Achievement luncheons and the Advance All-Star dinners run by the newspaper's Sports Department. She retired in 1986. As a young woman, Mrs. Ernst had worked as a secretary to the principal of Holy Family Academy in Bayonne, of which she was a graduate and later, during World War II, she worked for the federal government in the Manhattan offices of the War Department. While her children were in school, Mrs. Ernst served as president of the Federation of Catholic Mothers' Guild of Staten Island. She was also a founding member and vice-president of the Mothers' Guild of St. Sylvester's School, as well as being a member of the Parent Association of St. Joseph Hill Academy. She was a long-time member of the Cameron Club of Staten Island in Grasmere. An avid golfer, she was a member of the Water Gap Country Club, Pa. Mrs. Ernst was a member of the Community Assistance Program at Our Lady of the Lake R.C. Church in Verona. She also continued her lifelong love of learning by taking classes at Caldwell College when she was in her 70s. According to her family, Mrs. Ernst was an avid reader who enjoyed discussing politics and current events with family members and friends and traveling in the United States and abroad. In 2012, Mrs. Ernst was honored by the Ladies of Charity of the Archdiocese of New York for more than 50 years of volunteer work with the organization. She was a founding member of the Staten Island chapter of the Blue Army of Fatima.

Her husband of 41 years, Bernard J. Ernst, died in 1984. Her daughter, Mary Ellen Walker, died in 2007, and a granddaughter, Kristen Walker, died in 2005. She was predeceased by her parents, Edward and Mildred Tierney; her sisters, Florence Tierney and Ann Tierney Murphy and her brother, Edward A. Tierney Jr. Surviving are three daughters, Susan J. Hillers (and her husband, Raymond), Jane A. Harris (and her husband, Jeffrey), and Lisa T. Castellano (and her husband, Dr. Joseph Castellano); a son, Bernard J. Ernst, Jr. (and his wife, Margaret S. Grisham); a son-in-law, Henry R. Walker; two brothers, James Tierney (and his wife, Doris), and Thomas Tierney (and his wife, Dorothy); two sisters, Mildred Rolls and Jane Milza (and her husband, Edward). She is the grandmother of Brian Hillers, Tracy Hillers Nolen (and her husband, John), Kara Hillers Allen (and her husband, John), Lauren, Joseph and Gabriella Castellano, Jillian Harris, Anthony Grisham (and his wife, Ruth), Melanie Grisham Pulik (and her husband, Michael). She is also survived by her great grandchildren, Kelsea Nolen, Max, Jack, Brendan and Mollie Allen, Aria and Chloe Grisham, and Michael Jr. and James Pulik, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be at the Prout Funeral Home (, 370 Bloomfield Avenue, Verona, on Wednesday from 4 to 8pm. The funeral will be Thursday from the Prout Funeral Home, with a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. in Our Lady of the Lake Church, both in Verona. Burial will be in Moravian Cemetery, Staten Island. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Endowment Trust of Our Lady of the Lake Church, Verona or Holy Family Academy, Bayonne would be appreciated.

Funeral Home
Prout Funeral Home
370 Bloomfield Avenue
Verona, NJ 07044
(973) 239-2060
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Published in Asbury Park Press on Feb. 12, 2013
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