Eleanor K. McCabe, 97, died at her home in Rumson on Wednesday, March 29 surrounded by family and her beloved dogs, Emma and Oscar. Eleanor was born in Worcester, Massachusetts, to Ellen and Joseph Kadis. She worked as a legal secretary in Boston, Washington, D.C. (where she also served as an air-raid warden during World War II), and New York City.
It was in New York City that Eleanor met her future husband, Eugene J. McCabe, who was then an officer at Colonial Trust. The couple eventually left the city for Rumson to raise their family. A wife and mother first, Eleanor was an avid student of life who pursued higher education well into her eighties, taking courses at Boston University, Northeastern University, Emerson College, Columbia University, Fordham University and Brookdale Community College. She owned and operated Fair Haven Fabrics in the 1970s.
Eleanor was an environmentalist before the term was popularized, an activist for improved mass transportation in New Jersey, and a trustee and longtime member of the Monmouth Beach Bath & Tennis Club. She was involved in several organizations, including Holy Cross School and Church.
An avid tennis player, Eleanor also enjoyed running and fitness training. This set the stage for her later years, when her favorite activities changed to reading The New York Times in bed, doing the crossword puzzle, and eating ice cream. Her wit and wisdom made her a favorite with friends both young and old.
Eleanor was predeceased by her beloved husband, Eugene; her son, Michael, who was killed at the World Trade Center on 9/11; her granddaughter, Shannon Lynn McCabe; her brothers, Joseph and George Kadis; a sister, Anne M. Stone; a nephew, George Kadis; and twin nieces, Carol McGill and Virginia Sheppard. Surviving are her four loving children, Mary Ellen (Robert Kirschner), Eugene Jr. (Maureen), Suzanne and Nicholas (Robert Florczak); and seven cherished grandchildren, Nicholas and Kevin Kirschner; Jack and Riley McCabe; and Cassidy, Regan, and Liam McCabe and their mother, Lynn. Eleanor’s family would like to express their profound gratitude to her devoted caregivers, Verna (Jean) Mitchell and Monika Mary McCall, and to the Visiting Nurse Association.
Visitation will be held at the John E. Day Funeral Home, 85 Riverside Ave., Red Bank, on Friday, April 7, from 4 to 8 p.m. A Funeral Mass will take place at the Church of the Nativity in Fair Haven on Saturday, April 8, at noon. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Eleanor’s honor to the VNA Health Group, Tuesday’s Children, or the Monmouth County Historical Association-Taylor Butler Home.
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