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Eleanor D. Fleming

May 1, 1921 ~ February 19, 2022 (age 100)

Obituary

Eleanor Jane Duncklee Fleming, a resident of Dallas for the past 73 years, died peacefully at her home on February 19.  She was 70 days shy of her 101st birthday.

 

Born on May 1, 1921, to Elmer and Mildred Duncklee, Mrs. Fleming spent her formative years in New England, first living in New London and then Mystic, Connecticut, in a picturesque home on the Mystic River banks. 

 

Mrs. Fleming often said that she could not imagine a better childhood than hers.  She sailed, skated, and rowed on the Mystic River, where she also learned to swim.  A member of local Girl Scout Troop 26, she was awarded the Girl Scout’s highest award, the Golden Eaglet.  She reveled in Mystic’s rich seafaring history, rejoicing at the sight of the Charles W. Morgan, the oldest and last of the Atlantic Coast whaling vessels, coming up the Mystic River in 1941.

 

Proud of her New England roots, she took delight in reading and reciting the poetry of fellow New Englanders Robert Frost and Amy Lowell.

 

She was valedictorian of her 1938 Robert E. Fitch High School class. At the urging of her family doctor, she went to Boston’s Simmons College to pursue an education in nursing, graduating in 1943 with a B.S.N.

 

While at Simmons, Mrs. Fleming greatly enjoyed being part of the “Fetter Family of Boston”, a youth group led by Rev. Dr. Norman Fetter, and composed of college-age students from Simmons, Wellesley, Harvard, and other local colleges.  There she met her future husband, Robert “Bob” Lewis Fleming, to whom she was married for 67 years before he predeceased her in April 2011. 

 

A well-known figure to many Back Mountain schoolchildren, Mrs. Fleming was a school nurse for decades, working at the Gate of Heaven School and for the Dallas School District.  Her patience, compassion, and kindness were qualities that made her exceptionally suited to being a loving daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, school nurse, and friend to many.

 

After retirement, Mrs. Fleming and her husband Bob were able to take trips to places they had long wanted to visit, including the South Pacific where Bob had flown missions as a WWII Navy pilot.  Their trips to Africa were especially treasured, as the couple saw many animals in the wild, including Mrs. Fleming’s favorite - the elephant.  

 

The most meaningful aspect of such travels, though, was the people met and friendships created.  Through the auspices of Servas International, Mrs. Fleming and her husband formed cherished relationships with others around the world.

 

An avid reader and lover of books, Mrs. Fleming was a long-standing supporter of the Back Mountain Library. She worked for years on behalf of the annual Library Auction, and was gratified to be a founding donor of the Back Mountain Library’s Giving Evergreens program. 

 

She was a member for nearly 72 years of the Dallas United Methodist Church.  She and her husband Bob, and their children were chosen as “Christian Family of the Year” in 1961.

 

Mrs. Fleming is survived by her seven children and their spouses, Susan and Hugh Fitzpatrick (Coventry, RI); Peggy Fleming (Burr Ridge, IL); Jean Fleming and Arthur Posey (Wayland, MA); Lucy and Mike Messersmith (Dallas, PA); John and Kathie Fleming (Arcadia, CA); Nancy and Rick Stephenson (Philadelphia, PA); and Bill Fleming and Naomi Milton (Arlington, VA).

 

 She is survived by 12 grandchildren, Debbie Fitzpatrick (Chestnut Hill, MA); Becky Fitzpatrick (Arlington, VA); Kerry Fitzpatrick (Arlington, VA); Melinda Karalius (Covington, LA); Robert Karalius (Burr Ridge, IL); Adam and wife Megan Posey (Ithaca, NY); Michael and wife Laura Messersmith (New York City, NY); Megan and husband Lee Christoff (Duluth, GA); John C. Fleming III and wife Becky Fleming (Glendale, CA); Elena Stephenson (Paris, FR); Ben Fleming (Arlington, VA) and Sarah Fleming (Arlington, VA); as well as two great-grandchildren, Gloria Posey (Ithaca, NY) and John C. Fleming IV (Glendale, CA). 

 

She is also survived by nephew John Lamourine (Gales Ferry, CT); niece-in-law Jackie Lamourine (Niantic, CT); and niece-in-law Carole Lamourine (Old Lyme, CT). 

 

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Back Mountain Memorial Library, 96 Huntsville Road, Dallas, Pennsylvania 18612, and the Dallas United Methodist Church, 4 Parsonage Street, Dallas, Pennsylvania, 18612. 

 

Mrs. Fleming will be interned beside her husband at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date, at which time a private family service will take place.

 

Funeral service will be held privately at the convenience of his family. Arrangements are under the direction of The Richard H. Disque Funeral Home, Inc. 2940 Memorial Highway, Dallas, Pa. 18612. Online condolences can sent to Disquefuneralhom


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