Gloria S. Ernst, age 90, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, January 28, 2020.
Born in Newark, NJ, Gloria was the daughter of the late Fred and Sarah (Underhill) Smith. After graduating from Manasquan High School, she attended Millersville State Teacher’s College, where she graduated in 1950 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education, as well as her Plus 30 Certification to teach in middle school. While at Millersville, Gloria met the love of her life and her future husband, Eugene H. Ernst.
Gloria began her teaching career as a teacher in an Amish schoolhouse before teaching at Penn State. At Penn State, she taught English to students whose parents were professors there. Gloria and Eugene then moved to Delaware, where she enjoyed staying home to raise her three children. During this time, she was a Cub Scout Leader for her two sons. In 1967, Gloria began teaching at Lora Little Elementary School. Six years later, she taught at Skyline Middle School until she retired in 1987.
Family was paramount in Gloria’s life. She was the matriarch of the family and the “boss”. Gloria was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother who will be remembered for her trust, kindness and compassion. She gave her children the freedom to live and learn from their experiences and was always there to support them through their accomplishments and struggles.
Gloria treasured spending time with her family. Her daughter, granddaughter and great-granddaughter will miss their annual tradition of making Christmas cookies together. An amazing hostess, Gloria loved having the family together for her annual Christmas Eve dinner. Through the years, many favorite memories will be remembered through the annual family camping trips through North America to visit the National Parks, which they visited all but one. A special trip for Gloria and Eugene was their cruise to Alaska that they were gifted by their children to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.
For over 30 years, Gloria was very active at Grace Lutheran Church, where she sang in the choir. In earlier years, she was the youth choir director and taught vacation bible school at Faith Lutheran Church. She was also a member of the Daughters of the Revolution and the Colonial Dames.
Gloria was a talented seamstress and crocheted beautiful afghans. She also enjoyed watching NASCAR, especially Jeff Gordon, and motocross racing. Gloria also spent time antiquing with her husband. She was also a dog lover, who loved her beloved shelties.
Gloria is survived by her beloved husband of 67 years, Eugene H. Ernst; her children, Diane Bollmeier (John), Keith Ernst (Judy), and Steve Ernst (Betsy); her grandchildren, Justin McKinley, Jennifer Rongaus (Ken), Andrew Ernst (Brie), Elizabeth DiMarco (John), Candace Orlando-Ernst (Lauren), Michelle Voegele (Jimmy), Matthew Ernst and Cameron Ernst; her eight great-grandchildren; and her brother, Ron Smith (Ann).
Family and friends may visit from 10 to 11 AM on Friday, February 7 at Grace Lutheran Church, 2033 Graves Rd., Hockessin, DE 19707, where a Celebration of Gloria’s Life will begin at 11 AM. Interment will be private.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Grace Lutheran Church.
To send flowers to Gloria's family, please visit our floral section.
Grace Lutheran Church
2033 Graves Rd., Hockessin DE 19707