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Grace Jacklyn Zimmerman

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Grace Jacklyn Zimmerman Obituary
Grace Jacklyn Zimmerman

AGE: 83 •

Died in Ithaca, NY, after a brief illness on September 13, 2015, at the age of 83, with her family at her side. Grace was born in Tamaqua, PA on January 14, 1932, the daughter of Walter and Dorothy Haiges. She married John Richard Zimmerman in 1954, and they were married for 52 years before he passed away in 2006.

She is survived by her daughter Jan (and spouse Debra Johnson) of Newark DE, son Scott of Ithaca NY, her granddaughter Rachel Fitzgerald (Bryce) of Suffolk, Virginia, and her great grandson Brennan Fitzgerald. She was predeceased by her parents and all three of her siblings, Mildred Miller, Ardith Shea, and Richard Haiges. She lived in Pennsylvania, New York State, and Newark, DE from 1976 to 2010, when she moved to Ithaca NY to live next door to her son. She graduated from Tamaqua High School in 1949 and earned her Registered Nurse degree at Allentown General Hospital School of Nursing in 1952. She worked as a nurse throughout much of her life, her final employer being Union Hospital in Elkton MD. She also worked as a teacher's aide in the public schools in State College, PA, and enjoyed helping children who were struggling to learn to read. She retired from nursing in 1988 but remained close friends with many of her fellow nurses.

Grace was a strong and articulate woman who had a great sense of beauty and love of nature. She was an artist in many capacities: musician, painter, sculptor, gardener (who planted her gardens so that some flower was always in bloom), and in her later years maker of lovely handmade quilts and wall hangings. Several of her pieces are on display at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Newark DE, and those who own the quilts she made treasure them. While still in high school, she wrote the lyrics to her school song. Throughout her life she had a beautiful singing voice and loved to play her piano and keyboard. She was a strong believer in human rights and an admirer of former president Jimmy Carter, and volunteered her time for Habitat for Humanity and Planned Parenthood. Grace was an active member of Unitarian Universalist congregations in all the places she lived after her marriage: Bethlehem PA, State College PA, Potsdam NY, Ithaca NY, and Newark DE. At the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Newark, she was a member of the Caring Committee and the No Fault Quilters, and along with her husband John was a vocal and involved member of the congregation for over 30 years.

A Memorial Service and Celebration of Life will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Newark, DE, 420 Willa Road, on Saturday, October 10, 2015, at 2:00pm. We invite those who knew and loved Grace to join us. In lieu of flowers, we suggest a donation to Habitat for Humanity or Planned Parenthood in Grace's name.



Published in The News Journal on Sept. 23, 2015
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