Elizabeth Okoniewski Barczewski passed away on September 24, 2019 at Kentmere Nursing Care and Rehabilitation, her caregivers for the past 3 years on Lovering Ave. in Wilmington, at the age of 93. She was born in Wilmington, DE to Mary and Valentine Okoniewski and was the 6th of 12 children. She graduated from St. Hedwig’s, St. Paul’s Commercial and Wilmington High Schools.
Honey, as she was known to her family and friends, was employed as a secretary at Continental American Life Insurance Company in Wilmington. She married Edward S. Barczewski in 1947 and became a stay at home Mom in 1950 after the birth of her first of 5 children.
She returned to work in 1965, working in the office of the Oblates of St. Francis on Kentmere Parkway in Wilmington and was later employed by the law firm of Cooch and Taylor as a legal secretary. She was known as “Betty” to her co-workers, enjoyed her career there and became President of the Legal Secretaries Association. She loved this role and had the opportunity to travel around the country for annual meetings. She retired from Cooch and Taylor in 1998.
Betty had many talents - she could sew, knit, crochet, cook, bake and play the piano. She had a “green thumb” and loved her garden. She always had a bouquet of fresh flowers for anyone who stopped by. Roses, Peonies, Lilies, Hydrangea, Iris, Lilac, Daffodils - something was always blooming during the growing season and they were beautiful! She also had a grapevine and made wine and jelly from her own grapes. And she loved the Beatles.
She is survived by her four daughters, Florence “Flossie” Barczewski, Betsy Totaro (Frank), and Marianne “JoJo” Hudson all of Wilmington, DE, and Alice Stark (Joe) of Bethlehem, GA; five grandchildren, Joe Stark, III (Nicole) of Winder, GA, Samantha Stark Ross (Evan) of Bethlehem, GA, Noah Hudson and Kristen Totaro Frentzel (Jon) of Wilmington, DE and Cassie Totaro of Philadelphia, PA; four great grandchildren, Natalie Stark, Strider Ross, and Annabelle and Zoe Frentzel; a brother, Albin Okoniewski of Wilmington, DE; three sisters, Sr. M. Laetitia and Sr. M. deLourdes of Reading, PA and Leona Papagno of Elkton, MD; many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband, Edward, Sr., her son, Edward, Jr.; four brothers, Lawrence, William, Francis and Edward Okoniewski; three sisters, Florence “Fluffy” Okoniewski, Carolyn Wells and Dorothy Blaschke.
Family and friends are invited to the visitation at St. Elizabeth Church, Cedar and S. Clayton Streets, Wilmington on Monday, September 30 from 9:30-10:45 AM. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00 AM, immediately followed by interment in Cathedral Cemetery.
The family requests memorial contributions in memory of Elizabeth be made to St. Elizabeth Church, 809 S. Broom Street, Wilmington, DE 19805 or the Delaware Humane Association, 701 A Street, Wilmington, DE 19801.
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St. Elizabeth Parish
809 S. Broom Street, Wilmington DE 19805
Delaware Humane Society
701 A Street, Wilmington DE 19801