Lois Helen Rotering Harasek, 92, of Heath Village, Hackettstown, NJ, passed peacefully to the Lord on Wednesday, May 29, ten years since the death of her beloved husband Walter Harasek. Born in 1926 on Nov. 2, All Souls' Day, in New York, Lois's parents Kathryn Healy and Lewis Rotering welcomed her as their third child. When Mother Kathryn died 2 years later, Daddy Lew raised his four children through the Depression years, with faith and love. Lois earned a Bachelors degree from Queens College and worked as both a bilingual secretary and then a clerk at Macy's New York.
During a ski holiday in Massachusetts, Lois met jovial Walter. They got to know each other back in New York, and married Sept. 25, 1954 at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Queens Village,NY. In 1956 Mary Kathryn was born, then Nancy Marie in 1958. In 1959, they moved from their Bronx apartment to a new house in Ramsey NJ. In 1962, they took in Walter's parents, Edward and Mary Elizabeth. After Edward passed in1964, Mary E. stayed on with them until having a stroke in 1972.
Lois worked part-time jobs in Ramsey area to help save for the girls' education. Her efforts put MK through college, and NM through nursing school. In 1982, Nancy married Jay Gerbehy of River Vale, NJ. In 1983, Mary married Douglas Ziegenfuss of Norfolk,Virginia. Lois's first grandchild Douglas, Jr. was born 5 months before her second grandson, Ryan.
In 1984, "Lo & Wal" moved to retirement in Port Charlotte,SW Florida, graciously and frequently hosting northern visitors. Wal enjoyed art activities, while Lois worked in an orange grove store and then for the Charlotte County Libraries. Lois finally retired at age 77! During retirement, she and Walter enjoyed 30+cruises from Florida ports, and some trips to Europe.
When Walter got cancer in 2009, the extended family took a Canada cruise just before he passed.Lois stayed on in Florida until she decided to return north to the Heath Village community in NJ, to be closer to family. There she moved into a nice apartment, with lovely gardens and friendly atmosphere. When Lois had a fall in2016, she needed rehab time and a move to the HV nursing home. There she enjoyed the help of Vilma, her aide, and the salmon dinners on Sundays. OLM Church provided weekly visits and Communion services. Hearty volunteers provided many fun activities.
Lois is survived by daughters Mary (Douglas) Ziegenfuss and Nancy (Jay) Gerbehy, their children Douglas, Jr. (Kelsey), Ryan (Diana), Kirsten (Matt Alday), and Greta;great-grandchild Juliet Alday; brother-in-law Raymond Harasek, and many beloved nieces and nephews.
A funeral Mass will be held on Saturday, June 1, 2019 at 11:30AM at Our Lady of the Mountain Catholic Church, Schooleys Mountain Road, Long Valley. Burial with her husband's remains at the OLM cemetery will be held at a later date.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Maguire-Scala Memorial Home 124 High Street,Hackettstown, NJ 07840. To send anon-line condolence please visitwww.maguire-scalamemorialhome.com