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Michelene (Pilch) Hearey

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Michelene (Pilch) Hearey Obituary
Michelene Pilch Hearey

AGE: 93 • Oaklyn

Michelene Pilch Hearey came of age during the Great Depression. She decided to live her life doing whatever she could to provide her children with the things she did not have, mainly, exposure to the arts, and education. She and her husband, Charles DeLisle Hearey, who predeceased her, raised their seven children, imbuing them with educational values and an appreciation of the arts. Mrs. Hearey passed away peacefully on September 7, 2014, at her long-time Oaklyn home, surrounded by her children and abundant love. She succumbed to complications of congestive heart failure. She was one week shy of her 94th birthday. Michelene Pilch Hearey was born in Camden on September 15, 1920. She and her two sisters, Stephanie and Dorothy, who both predeceased her, were the three daughters of Blaise and Marya Pilch. Growing up on Norris Street, Michelene was compelled to leave Camden High School in 1935 after her sophomore year to work in a cigar factory. Soon tiring of the labors, she became a beautician, and after working only two years, bought out her employer, and opened her own salon at the age of 17. Michelene's, her beauty shop, was a fixture at 611 White Horse Pike in Oaklyn for four decades. She married her husband Charles, Audubon High School Class of '34, on July 17, 1943 in Camden, and they enjoyed a wonderful life together until his death from cancer on December 6, 1989. For the last 25 years of her life, Mrs. Hearey still worked as a beautician, in her own shop and also at the Cooper River Convalescent Center in Pennsauken, where she often worked with clients younger than she. In 1995, she was honored by the New Jersey Cosmetology Association for her then-sixty years of "keeping paramount the best interests of her clients' appearance and their well-being."

Michelene, also known as "Mickey," and her husband loved and enjoyed their children: Charles DeLisle Hearey, Jr., M.D. (Elizabeth) of Orinda, California; Mary Denise O'Brien (Thomas) of Gates Mills, Ohio; Christopher Dean Hearey of Oaklyn; Bruce Gerard Hearey (Stephanie) of Shaker Heights, Ohio; Patricia Diane Hearey of Oaklyn; Clement James Hearey II, also of Shaker Heights, Ohio; and Michele Taffet (Robert, M.D.) of Haddonfield. She also had 21 grandchildren: Ray Hearey, M.D. (Deb); Katy Hearey Faix (Tripp); Sarah Hearey Blaustein (Pete); Kevin and Sean O'Brien (Jeannine); Conor O'Brien (deceased); Leif Dormsjo (Kristin); Owen and Jill Hearey; Alex, Charlie, Corey and Henry Boeschenstein; C.J., Michael and Chris Hearey; Michelene Hearey Taptich (Tony); and Liz, Charlie, Caroline, and Sam Taffet, and five great-grandchildren.

Mrs. Hearey's children all took piano, singing and dancing lessons, and performed as a family song and dance act in the 1950's and early 60's, at weddings, banquets, and other celebrations. They even had one memorable television appearance on the Horn and Hardart Children's Hour. In education, Mr. and Mrs. Hearey encouraged their children to apply to the best schools they could. The seven children, all told, secured various degrees and scholarships from Boston University, University of Pennsylvania, Butler University, Harvard University, Cornell University, Wesleyan University, the University of Michigan, the Monterey Institute of International Studies, and Fordham University. In the year 2000, because of her promotion of education, Mrs. Hearey became an honorary member of the Class of 1938 of Camden High School, being awarded an honorary diploma, some 65 years after she first started there. She kept up her informal education by her voracious reading of three newspapers a day, and her habitual viewing of cable news channels. Mrs. Hearey was also an avid sports fan, who followed intensely the up and down fortunes of the Phillies, and all her beloved Philadelphia sports teams. She also rarely missed a sporting event or performance of one of her children or grandchildren, even if it meant an automobile trip of eleven hours or more.

Friends can visit at Creran Funeral Home, 400 White Horse Pike, in Oaklyn, NJ, 08107, this Friday, September 12, 2014, from 7:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. Friends can also call from 9:30 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. on Saturday morning, September 13, 2014, at the St. Aloysius Church, St. Joseph the Worker Parish, at 37 West Haddon Avenue in Oaklyn. The funeral service and Mass will follow immediately at St. Aloysius, beginning at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Samaritan Healthcare and Hospice, 5 Eves Drive, Marlton, New Jersey, 08053, or Phillies Charities, Inc., One Citizens Bank Way, Philadelphia, PA 19148.



Published in Courier-Post from Sept. 10 to Sept. 12, 2014
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