Cover photo for Elizabeth Thora Howarth's Obituary
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1920 Elizabeth 2017

Elizabeth Thora Howarth

September 28, 1920 — October 31, 2017

Elizabeth Thora Howarth
September 28, 1920 – October 31, 2017

Elizabeth was born on September 28, 1920, the third of five children of Ole and Thora Larsen in Scotch Plains, NJ. She attended the Scotch Plains school system and graduated from Scotch Plains High School. After high school, Elizabeth had a bank job in Manhattan. During World War II, she gave up her bank job to be a "Rosie the Riveter" working for General Motors in Linden, NJ to help the war effort. After the war, she married Lewis B. Howarth in September of 1945 and the couple bought their first home in Westfield, NJ. In March of 1947 they became the proud parents of twin daughters, Joyce and Claudia. For many years Elizabeth was a housewife and mother. In 1963 the family moved to a newer home in a different part of Westfield, with teenage daughters nearing college age, she returned to the work force and was employed by the Fibro Company in Clark, NJ making injection molded plastic parts.

In the 1970's Elizabeth dedicated herself to being a grandmother and homemaker. She and Lewis enjoyed hosting their family often, but especially for traditional holiday celebrations on Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. Delicious home cooked meals around the dining room table, and time spent together made for many fond memories. We learned our table manners at that table, and that holidays were special times with special traditions to embrace. Grandchildren remember a seemingly endless supply of M&M's always served in little glass Pyrex custard cups, of playing in the backyard and climbing the willow tree, of Easter Egg hunts in the backyard, Mocha Cake, Rice Pudding and Krumkake at Christmastime, of Brown Cows (chocolate coated ice cream popsicles) from the bottom freezer of the turquoise refrigerator in summer. The yellow station wagon, walks through the cemetery collecting acorns and fall leaves, visits to the playground and feeding bread to the ducks (and always a handi-wipe before heading home).

In 1980, Lewis and Elizabeth purchased their third home together in Belle Meade, NJ where they lived until 2000 when they moved back to Scotch Plains to live out the remainder of their years.

Throughout her life, Elizabeth enjoyed needlepoint, working on daily crossword puzzles, and listening to radio shows. She was an avid reader, and took great pride in a clean, well-cared for home. After officially joining in December 1933, she was an 83 year member of the Presbyterian Church in Westfield, NJ.

There are many words to describe Elizabeth: Daughter, Sister, Wife, Mother, Grandmother, Great-Grandmother, Cousin, and Aunt or Tante Betty. The common denominator here is Family. Her family was truly her world. She lived her life a shy, modest woman who did her best to be loving, caring and fair in her way.

Elizabeth was predeceased by her Father Ole Larsen in 1955, her mother Thora (Besta) Larsen in 1968, her husband Lewis B. Howarth in 2001, her Brother Olaf (Turp) in 1977 and Sisters Sophie Olsen in 2007 and Ruth Friest in 2014. She is survived by her Sister Lillian Thorsen of Iselin, NJ her daughters Claudia of Fanwood, NJ and Joyce Freed and husband Anker Winthur of Ringoes, NJ, Grandchildren, Tricia and Anthony Patricco of Warren, NJ, Dianne and James Adams of Carrolton, TX, William and Juliet Freed of Cincinatti, OH, Wendy and Russell McCleskey of Langhorne, PA and Rich Heffner of Germantown, MD. She has 5 great grandchildren and many nieces, nephews and extended family.
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