Agnes 'Dolly' Schirmer (1925-2015)

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Agnes 'Dolly' Schirmer (1925-2015)

My mother-in-law closed her eyes sometime Monday, and breathed her last yesterday afternoon with both her daughters at her side, in the mountaintop home she and her late husband Daniel built in Margaretville when he retired from Grumman more than 30 years ago.

She was herself retired from Grumman, by Grumman, 70 years ago.

While still in her teens "Dolly" became a real deal "Rosie the Riveter," one of those who took off their aprons to take over the defense plant jobs left by their husbands and sons who'd been called up to serve in WWII.

And at war's end when the men returned stateside and went back to work, "Dolly," as with most of her sisters-on-the-production-lines, was given a pink slip and a barely audible "Thanks."

Understandably, 20 years before the first bra was burned, it rankled her... but it didn't inform the rest of her life.

Until earlier this fall, she would get dressed Sunday morn­ings to drive down her mountain to get the newspaper... she stayed as active as she could for as long as she could.

The nonagenarians I've known seem to do that... that they've made it as far as a tenth decade means that they haven't ever tossed in the towel and aren't wont to do so at that point either.

Although she'd received Last Rites several times during the past months, "Dolly" hung on, spurred by her enduring wish to see a woman in the White House before she passed on.

(I never thought it was any big affection for Hillary... as a quiet statement from one of the last of the "Rosies," Carly probably would serve!)

But this week it was time... her daughters with her, her constant furball companion "Mindy" at her side and her beloved Luciano Pavarotti on the CD player.

She leaves three surviving children, ten grandchildren, ten great grandchildren and at least one son-in-law who'll always be grateful she gave him the opportunity to make a second first impression.

Comments

1. Jackie Bennett said...

Love, prayers and condolences to you and Jeanne and all Dolly's family. Your obit was perfect. Thanks so much for posting it.

And thank you, dear Jackie.
Dean

2. Barbara Ramsay said...

A lovely tribute........

Condolences to you and Jeanne.

Thank you, dear Barb,
Dean

3. Susie Raz Rogot said...

So sorry to hear about what must have been a very trying time for you both, Dean... I never met Jeanne's Mom, but she sounds like a classic!
Oxoxox

She was at that... I don't know any other "Rosies" left.

This was trying for Jeanne... when my own mother was experiencing her "end times," she was never further away than East Patchogue or, later, Westhampton Care Facility, and I can vividly recall getting 1:00 am or 6:00 am "You'd better come now" calls. For Jeanne it was all the way up to Margaretville... those were brutal drives.
– Dean

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