Ellen Margaret Cheever-Giorgi
1949 - 2021
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Ellen Margaret Cheever-Giorgi

Wilmington - Ellen Margaret Cheever-Giorgi, 1949-2021

On February 13, 2021, Ellen Margaret Cheever-Giorgi died peacefully at the age of 72 at her home in Wilmington, Delaware. A certified Master Kitchen and Bath Designer, Professional Member of the American Society of Interior Designers, and a Certified Aging in Place Specialist, Ellen - who began her career after graduating with a B.A. degree in home economics from California State University - was an industry icon and hall of fame designer whose career spanned more than 50 years. Through her prodigious contributions to the kitchen and bath industry, Ellen touched the lives of countless designers, colleagues, students, corporate officials, and homeowners.

Ellen was the undisputed queen of kitchen design, but she was also a queen in all the ways that mattered in life: she led by example, and was an extraordinary woman, designer, teacher, colleague, friend, sister, aunt, wife, "bonus mom," and grandmother. She cared tremendously about the world around her and always found time to help those in need. With all of the accolades and successes in her prestigious career, Ellen's greatest love was her dearest husband, Pete. Ellen and Pete married in 2003, and they enthusiastically merged their careers in kitchen design. She was devoted to Pete and each of his children and grandchildren. Ellen also had a love for travel - it was once said, "Where a beautiful soul has traveled, beautiful memories live forever." Ellen's, strength, beauty, and grace will forever fill and comfort the hearts of those who knew and loved her most. Ellen was predeceased by her parents Katherine and Howard Cheever, her brother Edward Cheever, and her stepdaughter Liz Waguespack.

In addition to her husband Pete, Ellen is survived by her aunt Ellen Sharbach, sister Mary Chastain, and nephews and nieces: Jared Chastain, Joshua Chastain, Katie Bailey, Rebecca Chastain, and Rachel Thomas. Ellen is also survived by Pete's children and their spouses: Peter Giorgi, Sal and Donna Giorgi, Louis Waguespack, Ann Marie and Mark Paris, and Anthony and Eva Giorgi, as well as Pete's 25 grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Ellen leaves behind a huge circle of friends, including her "bridesmaids" — Kathleen Donohue, Gay Fly, Leslie Hart, Esther Holloway, and Martha Kerr.

In lieu of flowers, please consider contributions in Ellen's memory to St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church 901 N. DuPont St. Wilm., DE 19805 (sapde.org) or Ministry of Caring, 115 E. 14th St. Wilm., DE. 19801(min istryofcaring.org). .

A Memorial Mass will be Celebrated on Saturday, February 27, 2021 at 11:00am at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church, 901 N. DuPont St., Wilmington DE 19805.

There will be a live-stream of Ellen Giorgi's Funeral Mass via the parish YouTube channel.

You may access the channel via the link at the top of the parish website homepage: https://sapde.org

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The News Journal from Feb. 18 to Feb. 26, 2021.
Memories & Condolences
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14 entries
February 26, 2021
Like Ellen & Pete's family, my family is another Kitchen & Bath Industry family & that is our connection. Not only is the news of Ellen's passing surreal to me, I am so saddened, so very saddened by it. She is - and always will be, a great part of our Industry...I simply cannot believe she is no longer with us. In my eyes Ellen was the Matriarch of the Kitchen & Bath Industry. My heart breaks for her love, Pete. Their love is just like the words out of the song, "True Companion," ...I can see us walking slowly arm in arm - Just like that couple on the corner do. To me, Pete & Ellen are that couple on the corner.
Ellen had a grace, like few others. She was one of the best educators our industry will EVER see. Listening to Ellen speak, was engaging - anytime I could attend a presentation of hers, I did. I encouraged all the designers I work with to go & see her speak whenever she was in their area. She was a greatly gifted speaker, not to be missed. A young designer could ask a basic question & Ellen's response started with, "I'm so glad you asked that question; that is a good question." She connected with people. Even the seasoned designers were drawn to hear Ellen speak - and that is no small feat in my book.
Ellen was the one person in our industry, the one person...who would say to me, "Now Karla, that is something you can share with me, but not really something you should say publicly." lol I SO appreciated her honesty, SO appreciated it - because it was done with caring; out of care for me. Other than my Mom, no one has ever said that sentence to me & I always appreciated it.
She gave me industry guidance so many times & I will carry the gift of it with me through my career. I will think of her every time I traverse EuroCucina as she gave the best advice on how to navigate the show.
With Ellen & Pete, I sat on Jenn-Air's Design Advisory Council. One DAC meeting we travelled from Chicago to MI to continue the meeting. Our group made a pit stop at a Starbucks for coffee & the restrooms. I was next in line after Ellen for the bathroom. As she walked out & I walked in, I giggled. Back on the bus I went up to her & asked her "Ellen, do you have touchless faucets in your home?" With a quizzical look on her face, she responded, "We do." And I said to her..."They don't have those at Starbucks." Ellen: "Was the faucet running?" "It was," I said & oh - we both had a good time laughing over it, as it felt like an inside joke for 2 people in a shared industry!
What Ellen did for our industry is unparalleled. She will be missed beyond words.
Our Matriarch is gone...and with that loss, I believe we have the end of an era in the Kitchen & Bath Industry.
karla Krengel
February 26, 2021
Ellen Thank you for being my dear Friend for 39 wonderful years.
I will miss you. Love Len
Len Casey
February 24, 2021
Sorry to hear of the loss of Ellen. Prayers for you and your family.
Patty Pedicone
February 23, 2021
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Sarah Reep Rauk
February 21, 2021
I met Ellen and her siblings for the first time when I was 11 years and she was 12 years old. I was so excited to meet them all. We changed coasts I am on the west coast and she was on the east coast. I knew that Ellen liked Italian men and cooking. She was always kind, gracious and funny. I considered her a friend. My hearts is aching and full from having her in my life. Love cousin Kate
Kate Donohue
February 21, 2021
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Kate Donohue and Notty Bumbo
February 20, 2021
I think I was a very bothersome little sister to Ellen. We were so opposite in many ways. I was a tom boy. She .... bribed her older brother to tell people she was 16 and older than Edward on a trip to Canada. Ellen's suicase had a picture of Elvis Presley taped inside the cover. I thought that was pretty silly.
We respected and appreciated each other's different careers. She was very good at what she does...did.... "The Queen of Kitchens." I was very good at what I did as a teacher. She a teacher too.
"We stick together" was our motto. Thought I'd have more time to "stick" to my sister.
Thank you Ellen for being the best sister ever.
Mary Chastain
February 20, 2021
I have been a kitchen and bath designer for over 40 years now, and I cherish that I was fortunate enough to study under Ellen back in the 80's. To this day, I practice principles that I learned from her. I have only the fondest memories of her and always followed her writings whenever I had the opportunity. If there was any single person that I have modeled my career and life after, it would have to be her. What a legacy! My heart goes out to all of your family. I cannot imagine the sorrow you must be feeling, but Ellen lives on in all of us!
Catharine Lawhon
February 19, 2021
To Pete and family from the Ministry of Caring 'family': our thoughts and prayers are with you during this very sad time. We pray that your wonderful memories of joyful family times will give you comfort and that God's love will give you peace. Thank you for remembering Ellen's life by caring for the poorest among us; we are very grateful. The Christmas village at the Village of St. John will always be a reminder of Ellen's concern for those with so little and the joy that, together, you brought, and will continue to bring, to those seniors.

Psalm 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Br. Ronald Giannone, OFM Cap.
Ministry of Caring

Br. Ronald Giannone, OFM Cap.
February 19, 2021
I am heart broken over the loss of Ellen, my friend of over 50 years. We grew up together in West Sacramento CA where we graduated from James Marshall High School. Ellen was a loving, loyal and inspiring friend that left us far too soon. We went on many trips and had so many adventures together over the years that I will never forget. To Pete she was so proud of you and loved you to the moon and back. I know that you and her families from the East to West Coasts are missing her so much.
My love to you all, Jean Driver Sawitzky
Jean Sawitzky
February 19, 2021
I will always remember Ellen for being a kind and loyal friend. She was a joy to work with and was I blessed to have known her. May God bless and comfort you Pete in Christ's love as you grieve your loss.
Geoff Martin
February 19, 2021
My wife Sandi and I send you, Pete, and your family our "Prayers for the Peace that Passeth Understanding" on the passing of Ellen. Although I knew her only in passing, through you, I'm certain she was a wonderful and extraordinary woman. We send our condolences.
Sam Waltz
February 19, 2021
We are very sorry to hear of the passing of Ellen, god bless her and her family..heaven is a better place with her there...
Rudy and Margaret Wagner
February 19, 2021
I remember your wife well when she was involved in the historical architecture marketing at Winterthur where I have worked for 30+ years.
My sincere sympathy for the death of such a talented person.
Jean Raleigh
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