Norma Jean Reilly, 93, formerly of Camp Hill, passed away peacefully while surrounded by her loving family on Tuesday, September 8, 2020 at Church of God Home in Carlisle. Born October 14, 1926 in Amsterdam, NY, Norma was the daughter of the late George Boerner and Irene Lounsbeck Boerner. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 62 years, Vincent J. Reilly and great grandson, Tyler Horn. Norma is survived by her sons, Timothy V. Reilly and wife Sandy, of Millerstown; Terry Reilly and wife , Liz of Camp Hill; Michael P. Reilly of Shelburne, VT; daughter, Mary Mekhail and husband Sameh of Camp Hill: four grandchildren, eight great grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren. She was a parishioner of Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Camp Hill. Her life started out in the small mill town of Amsterdam, NY, which she never stopped referring to as "back home." She left school in the tenth grade to work in the mill becoming a "Rosie the Riveter" in support of our WWII troops while helping her family financially. She would later meet and marry a handsome WWII combat veteran, Vincent Reilly. They would go on to lovingly raise four children. In 1959 with three sons in tow and a daughter on the way, Norma and her husband relocated to Camp Hill, PA. Norma flourished in her role as a devoted housewife and mother. Nothing gave her greater joy or satisfaction than caring for and loving her family. No one could ask for a better wife or mother. She had so many talents. She could paint beautiful artwork as well as paint the entire interior and exterior of the family home. Her potato salad, meatballs and molasses cookies were second to none. Her soothing, gentle words of encouragement could take away the pain when nothing else would. She could play the organ, sing harmony, hit the bulls-eye on a dart board or air pistol target and always managed to make good things happen for her family, even when there were literally just pennies and dimes in her change purse. She loved gardening, lilacs, feeding the birds, squirrels and chipmunks, looking at the ocean, visiting with neighbors and drinking an Old Fashioned. Above everything, she fiercely loved her family and never for a moment, did her family doubt her love or pride in them. The world has lost a light, but the Milky Way is brighter now that her light shines from above. Rest in peace, Lilac Girl. Memorial services will be at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, donations in her honor can be made to the National Audubon Society, Humane Society or ASPCA.
Published in Patriot-News from Sep. 11 to Sep. 13, 2020.