Eleanore Olatta, 91, Former Hanover Teacher, Passed Away

Eleanore Olatta

HANOVER TOWNSHIP —  Eleanore Olatta, 91, passed away in Wall Township, on April 21, 2020, from the coronavirus, after suffering from Alzheimer’s for a number of years.

Eleanore was born on September 27, 1928, in Cleveland, Ohio, to Joseph and Louise Merhar. Her parents predeceased her, as well as her sisters Josephine, Carolyn, and Albina, and her brother Albert. Eleanore married John P. Olatta in August 1950; and is survived by her husband and her daughters MaryEllen (Jim Williamson), Amy Dixon, and her beloved granddaughters Elise and Kara Dixon. Her daughter Barbara (Sue Stager) passed away in 2017.

While raising her girls, Eleanore went back to work and to school. Her love of children’s literature became the foundation for her bachelor’s degree and then a Masters in Library Science. She was very proud of her 30-year career in the Hanover Township, and Parsippany public schools, leading the effort to bring the schools’ libraries into the technological age by digitizing the card catalogs and transforming the library into a modern media center.

John and Eleanore enjoyed their second home in Wellfleet, Cape Cod for many years, walking the dunes and collecting antiques and evocative works from local artists and craftspeople. An inveterate walker, Eleanore spent many happy hours “walking the boards” between Spring Lake and Ocean Grove. In mid-life they took up cross-country skiing, and loved their winter holidays in Altenmarkt, Austria.

Eleanore was an avid NY Times crossword puzzler, a stickler for grammar, a crafter of holiday pine cone wreaths, and a fine cook, seamstress, and knitter. She loved Andy Williams, classical music, and hated losing at cards and board games.

There will be no services at this time. Please honor Eleanore’s memory by reading to children, to grandchildren and great-grandchildren, or by supporting Reading is Fundamental. And whenever you wonder about something, remember to “look it up!”

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the O’Brien Funeral Home, Wall Township.