On December 5, 2017, Helen Gedney DeLuca passed away peacefully in Florham Park, N.J. surrounded by her loving family. Helen lived an extraordinarily full and happy life filled with endless joy and love. Her uniquely sunny and optimistic outlook is a great lesson to all who knew and loved her. She was born in Maplewood, N.J. to Laurance and Helen Gedney on January 16, 1926. Helen graduated from Columbia High School and studied occupational therapy at Milwaukee Downer College before marrying Nicholas P. DeLuca in 1947, with whom she was married for 53 years. They had five children and made homesteads up and down the East Coast from New City, NY to the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Idyllic, unforgettable summers were spent in a house Helen and Nick built by the beach in Lavallette, NJ. After retirement, they moved to Morris, NY to pursue a lifelong dream of owning a farm. Helen worked tirelessly alongside Nick as they raised animals and vegetables, doing everything with great care, skill, and resourcefulness.
Helen was a caregiver to the core: substitute teacher, hospital volunteer, and homemaker extraordinaire. Her handcrafted clothing and unique homemade recipes are legendary and have been passed down through generations. She had a true love of music that was expressed through her beautiful singing voice, and she greatly enjoyed her travels across America and Europe.
Helen was predeceased by her husband, who passed away in 2001, as well as two sisters, Jane Gruning and Eloise Lawson. She is survived by her children and their spouses, Philip and Donna DeLuca, Suzanne and Michael Munning, John DeLuca and Rob Marshall, Nancy and Stanley Kufel, and David and Barbara DeLuca; as well as ten grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.