Obituary of Eleanor A. Crawford
Eleanor Ramsland Crawford peacefully went home to be with her Lord and Savior on July 19. 2020
“Ellie” was predeceased by her husband Woody in 2010. She leaves behind her siblings Alice Berg and Clarence “Bud” Ramsland, her children Kari Gribbon, Lee Crawford (Jeanne), and Daniel Crawford; and her five grandsons Jacob (Kelly), Joshua, and Jonathan "JC" Gribbon, Kevin and Conrad Crawford, and many dear relatives and friends.
Ellie was born in Brooklyn on May 24th 1940, and subsequently grew up in Orange, NJ. Following the untimely death of her father at age two, she was raised by her loving mother Ella, doting older siblings Alice and Bud, and many extended relatives in her large Norwegian family along with their supportive church community. She spent many happy summers at the Landrud family farm in Sussex, NJ. Following her graduation from Orange High School, she enrolled in Trinity College near Chicago, IL. During her first year, she attended a Youth for Christ rally where she met the tall and handsome Forest “Woody” Crawford. She left Trinity to marry Woody in December of 1960, initially settling in New Jersey.
While Woody served in the Army in Alabama, their daughter Kari was born. They returned to Parsippany, NJ and soon grew their family by two more children, Lee and Daniel. Together, they raised their children there. Ellie was a loving mother, consistently putting the needs of her family before her own. She possessed the gift of hospitality; the Crawford household was always a welcoming and encouraging place for neighborhood kids, friends, and family. The Crawfords were active members of Calvary Evangelical Free church in Essex Fells, living out their Christian faith through many of the ministries there including a neighborhood “Good News Club”.
Ellie worked for UPS in the HR department for many years, gathering friends along the way. She enjoyed all crafts – ceramics, stamping, scrapbooking – you name it, she did it! She could often be found caring for her five grandsons, engaging with them in games, crafts, painting, and baking. As the boys grew, she could be found attending their many sporting and school events. Ellie was famous for her macaroni salad and brownies, and if you couldn’t find her at home, you might find her at The Christmas Tree Shop with her close knit group of girlfriends known as “The Therapy Group”.
In later years, Ellie and Woody found a calling at Bethany Church, a Christ-centered, multicultural, Evangelical Free church in West Orange. Once again, her selfless gift of hospitality shone brightly. She and Woody donated much of their time to the ministries there, including the annual “Tea”, the Pastors Luncheons, and a friendly car service for those who didn’t drive.
Their greatest joy was supporting the Bethany Center for Champions, a local ministry of the church that serves at-risk youth through basketball, academic tutoring, Bible studies, and summer camp opportunities (including a send-off with a hot meal). If you would like to honor the memory of Ellie’s smile, laughter, and spirit of hospitality, please consider a generous donation to this vital ministry that was so close to her heart. www.bccwo.org
**A memorial service to celebrate Ellie's life will be planned when larger social gatherings are permitted.**
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