Elizabeth O. Geene "Betty' died on her 92nd birthday, Feb 26th, of a stroke. Born Elizabeth Ross Owen in East Orange, NJ in 1928, she grew up during the Great Depression and World War II. Her parents divorced when she was very young, and she and her sister were joined by four siblings and a new stepfather. The entire family survived on her mother's wage as a secretary. Her father worked a dairy farm in Northern NJ and she spent summers there.
After High School Elizabeth Owen went to secretarial school and then began working for RCA. She married Thor Bostrom of East Orange in 1950 and had 2 daughters. She sang in the New Jersey Oratorio Society, and there met Edward Barry Greene (Ted), who became her second husband after a divorce in 1956. The family moved to Poughkeepsie, NY, where Mr. Greene took a job as organist and choirmaster at the First Presbyterian Church. Betty took over direction of the 2 children's choirs, as well as singing in the adult choir. Both Betty and Ted were great supporters of choral music in the Hudson Valley, joining the Camorata Chorale for which Ted was also the accompanist.
In 1966 Betty went back to work as a secretary at Vassar College first in the Dean's office, and then in the Psychology Department. She retired at 65 in 1993. Edward Greene died in 2006, and when Betty's macular degeneration progressed to the point where she felt unsafe on the road, she sold her house and moved to Providence, RI.
Betty loved music, art, reading, walking and hiking. Two days before her death she walked Blackstone Boulevard as usual. She was an Adirondack 46er. She loved watercolor painting and attended classes at Hamilton House. She took up knitting, attended the Rhode Island Symphony, listened to NPR, read the New York Times, and had firm opinions about everything. She never owned a television, reading novels, biographies, history and poetry. She loved to cook. She was cheerful, brave, had many friends, and was always laughing. She will be greatly missed.
Betty is survived by her daughters, Leslie Bostrom of Pawtucket, and Christine Gold of Berkeley, CA, and her 4 grandchildren. There is no service but her ashes will be brought to the Adirondacks to be buried next to Ted's under the blue spruce near her beloved summer cottage.
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