Adele Marguerite Henderson, of Napanoch, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on August 13, 2022. She was 89.
Adele was born on January 14, 1933 in Ellenville, NY to Austin Brown and Angela Mildred Bliss. She was raised by her father and grandmother on a farm in Lackawack. She attended elementary school in a one-room schoolhouse in the valley now nestled under the Rondout Reservoir, and transferred to Ellenville High School in the ninth grade, where she met the love of her life, a Brooklyn-born boy by the name of Paul Henderson. They married soon after Adele graduated high school and began what would be a beautiful life together, building a home filled with love, celebration, food, and music and raising seven children–bearing witness to a strong, steady, faithful love spanning 62 years.
Adele, affectionately known as “Mom,” “Nanny,” and “Aunt Adele,” was truly a compassionate and loving person, traditional in her values of family and friendship, the kind of person whose kindness radiated to everyone around her. She possessed a combination of character traits rarely found–selfless and openhearted, wise and sensible, a woman of true grit. She did what was right, not what was easy. She was quick to welcome and “adopt” anyone who crossed her doorstep, offering comfort with a cup of coffee, a bowl of homemade soup, and unconditional love. She was morally strong, and she always stood up for the underdog or those who could not adequately defend themselves. With gentle nurturing, she inspired in her children a love of nature and appreciation for kindness. As one story goes, when preparing her children’s school lunches, she would make a few extra sandwiches for them to discreetly pass on to others who were less fortunate.
Adele enjoyed her family, pets, gardening, homesteading, birdwatching, and reading, and she was a remarkable cook. She could take anything from the pantry and whip up the most delicious meal from what was on hand. Her courage and vibrant, active mind were an inspiration to many. She wasted nothing and took nothing and no one for granted, drawing people from all walks of life into the family. Many fond memories were spent with Adele on her front porch up on “the hill,” where she enjoyed the mountain view, watching “her birds” and visiting with those she loved most. She will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved her.
Adele’s magnum opus was the raising of seven children and “adopted” children who cherished her steady, loving presence. She leaves behind six children, Steven Michael Henderson, Adele Barnard and her husband Chuck, Barbara Henderson and her husband Sherman Richards, Loretta Sauermelch and her husband Charles, Paul Henderson, Jr., and Jennifer Perito and her husband Anthony; thirteen grandchildren, Maggie, Kate, Austin (Pam), Ryan (Allyson), Gregory (Gillian), Celia (Jeffrey), Olivia (Gaige), Michael, Emma, Caleb, Noah, and Aaron; seven great-grandchildren, Zoey, Ayden, Ryan, Jeremy, Eden, Elliot, and Brantlee; beloved nieces and nephews who were as children to her, Claude, Terry, Mary, Mary Ellen, Rob, Frank, Susie, Christine, Cindy; and a host of extended family and friends. She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Paul, her son Gregory Henderson, her grandson Gabriel Edwards, her sister Connie Pivin, her nephews, James Pivin, John Pivin Jr., Rick Henderson, Tim Godfrey, and niece Kathy Godfrey.
A visitation will take place on Tuesday, August 16, 2022 from 6-8 pm at Colonial Memorial Funeral Home, 396 State Route 52 in Woodbourne. A graveside service will be held on Wednesday, August 17, at 10 am at Furman Cemetery on Yeagerville Road, in Napanoch.
In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Adele may be made to Liberty Lifesavers (formerly the Sullivan County Pregnancy Support Center) at PO Box 832, Liberty, NY 12754 or AFTLOW Pet Rescue at PO Box 125, Kerhonkson, NY 12446.
Arrangements are under the care of Colonial Memorial Funeral Home, 396 State Route 52, Woodbourne, NY. For additional information please contact the funeral home at 845-434-7363 or visit the website at www.colonialfamilyfuneralhomes.com.