Eileen Turyn of Ellicott City, Maryland passed away peacefully at her home on February 25, 2021, one week after her 94th birthday. Eileen spent the last years of her life with Alzheimer’s Disease, but was able to remain in her home and live as long as she did thanks to the personalized care of her wonderful caregivers.
Our mother Eileen met our father Vic (deceased) in their freshman year at the University of Maryland in 1945, where she also was a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority, and named Veterans Queen. Though she snubbed Vic until they were properly introduced, as he mistakenly called her Peggy due to a misunderstanding with roll call in class, it didn’t take long before they were engaged then married, and she left college to start a family while he finished college.
Our mom was always active in theater, especially musical theater and had a soprano voice that was unmatched. She was always the leading lady, and sometimes directed as well. She spent her early years doing some modeling for Look magazine and the Saturday Evening Post. Upon moving to Ellicott City she lent her voice to the church choir for many decades, as well as serving as song leader. She and her three daughters also sang in a quartet in church for Christmas masses for many years. She took up golf when the family moved from Garden City, NY to Ellicott City in 1970, and later on she and our dad both achieved a hole in one the same summer.
Being a child of the depression era, she was also dedicated to washing and reusing plastic bags, and melting down soap scraps to make new cakes, much to her family’s dismay. We were all taught how to sneak popcorn into the movie theater, and never order juice when out to breakfast because we had it at home. Frugal was her middle name.
As a daughter, she was firmly dedicated to her parents, because she loved them deeply. As they got up in years, she helped both move closer to her, and cared for them as they became more needy. After her father passed, and her mother was in a nursing home, not one day went by that she didn’t go to visit her. Not one.
As a mother, she was gentle and loving, and always full of humor, sometimes at inappropriate moments. She was quite a jokester. However she was not much of a cook, unless company was coming, which was the subject of much laughter in our adult years. She was, however, creative, clever and brilliant. We all felt she could put the TV character MacGyver in his place. And though we were not home schooled, she was always our teacher, a stickler for making sure we all spoke with proper grammar, spelling and usage, as well as displaying proper manners. Her heart was pure and kind. She was beautiful inside and out, and her character was so funny and charming, that she never struggled to make a friend—in fact many flocked to her and cherished her until their own deaths. It’s a good thing because she had to make new friends many times, having graciously picked up and moved her family 13 times due to dad’s transfers with the FBI.
Eileen is survived by four children who loved her more than words can express, Kathleen Stempkovski (Dick), Thomas Turyn (Dale), Laureen Peck (Joel) and Noreen Turyn, and grandchildren Rebecca, Matthew, and Jevie, as well as two loving brothers, Don (Claire) and Bruce (Jan) and her many nieces and nephews.
She is preceded in death by her college sweetheart and loving husband for more than 60 years Victor, and her parents Clark and Anne.
Her family is eternally grateful to her dedicated caregivers - Joann, LaToryea, Phyllis, and Rose, as well as to our sister, Kathy, who lovingly and willingly took on the daunting role as caretaker for both parents.
Due to COVID, the family encourages you to watch her funeral service on the church’s website, https://www.resurrectionmd.org, Saturday March 6, 2021 at 11 a.m. at Church of the Resurrection in Ellicott City, MD. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for contributions to The Alzheimer’s Association https://act.alz.org, or to an Alzheimer’s related organization of your choosing.
Gilchrist Hospice of Howard County