Elsie May Hiersche, 94 a member of the Greatest Generation, was born on March 15, 1918, in the Old Hampden Hospital in Springfield, MA to the late Franklin H. and Ethel May (Gorman) Ellison, and lived in Ludlow her entire life. Educated in local schools she was a 1936 graduate of Ludlow High School and an honors graduate of Holyoke Community College in 1982, with a degree in Early Childhood Education.
Elsie worked as a bookkeeper for the family owned Hiersche and Son Electrical business in Ludlow. She was also a waitress for Miller’s Dairy Bar in Ludlow, Friendly’s in Springfield and the old Howard Johnson’s on the MassPike. For ten years she was a sixth grade instructional aide at East Meadow School in Granby, MA and twenty years as a preschool teacher for HCS Head Start retiring in 1994, and then substituting for an additional ten years.
She was a lifelong member of the First Church in Ludlow, serving on numerous committees, teaching Sunday School for 32 years, and faithfully making fudge for the church fairs for over 40 years. For over 75 years she was active in Ludlow Grange, holding many offices including Master, and was a Seventh Degree member of the State and National Grange, serving as director of the state Community and Family Activities committee for 5 years. She was a member of the Hampden Harvest Club, Ludlow Historical Commission, First Meeting House Committee, and served as a Town of Ludlow precinct worker for several years, as well as a member of the Ludlow Present Day Club, and the Ludlow Woman’s Club. She was actively involved in 4-H for more than 70 years with 45 years as a local Sheep Club Leader.
She was the widow of Thomas A. Hiersche who died July 18, 1999. She was also predeceased by a granddaughter Molly Ann Hartley, son in law Peter Harris and Dan Kohlstrom.
Elsie is survived by her loving family, daughters Janet Hartley and her husband George of Westfield, MA Nancy Kavka and her husband Jeremy of Ludlow, MA Susan Vinton and Eric of Turners Falls, MA Judy Harris of Ludlow, MA Peggy Vershon of Ware, MA and Bonnie Louvitakis and her husband Marco of Ludlow, with whom she lived.
Cherished grandmother of Dan and Cathy Hartley, Andy and Lisa Hartley, Bret and Tasha Hartley, Brian and Kathy Hartley, Jennifer and Bob Tonning, Kevin and Chantelle Kavka, Lora and Tim Graves, Thomas Vinton, Kimberlee and Scott Illig, Jeff and Cynthia Harris, Amy and Tim Priest, Kara and Andrew Cozier, Tiffany Kohlstrom, Melina Nilson and Adam Kinsley, Katie and Shaun Mocciolo.
Devoted great-grandmother of Kristin Hartley, Matthew Hartley, Jacob Hartley, Sophia Hartley, Caleb Hartley, Joshua Hartley, Lexie Hartley, Bobby Tonning, Emily Tonning, Kelly Kavka, Nathan Kavka, Cayla Plasse and Tom Mimitz, Makenzie Plasse, Paul Vinton, Luis Vinton, Ryan Illig, Morgan Illig, Dillon Harris, Kyle Harris, Tyler Priest, Connor Priest, Peter Priest, Cody Ward, Emily Cozier, Bridget Cozier, Hannah Nilson, Jason Nilson and Everett Mocciolo. Loving great great-grandmother of Milo Mimitz. Elsie is also survived by her sister Edith Thompson and Godson Buddy Ellison both of Ludlow. Also survived by extended family members and friends.
Independently Owned and Operated Kapinos-Mazur Funeral Home and Cremation With Confidence by Kapinos-Mazur Care For The Community Since 1932
Funeral services celebrating her life will be Monday, January 28, 2013, at 10 AM at the First Church in Ludlow 859 Center Street Ludlow, MA Rites of committal will follow in Hillcrest Park Cemetery.