Elizabeth Ann P. (Betty) Freeman Zihala – 92
Betty Zihala died peacefully on June 3, 2020 at the Southern Ocean County Medical Center, Manahawkin, NJ.
She was born in Newark, NJ and resided in nearby West Orange for over 50 years. Betty was the daughter of the late Gertrude (Busold) and Joseph P. Freeman.
Betty married Robert W. Zihala in 1950 and raised 5 children together. After the death of her husband in 2000, she relocated to Little Egg Harbor, NJ. She loved the “shore” area, made many new friends and remained close to her immediate & extended family. History, genealogy, sports and politics were some of her favorite topics of interest. She wrote poems and visited Ireland to trace her Irish heritage.
Betty was employed for 24 years with the Social Service Dept. of Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation, W. Orange, NJ. She was a Communicant, Rosary Altar Society member, Senior Citizen Group member and an Interfaith Hospitality Network member for St. Raphael Church, Livingston, NJ for many years. For the past 19 years she was a member of St. Theresa Catholic Church, Little Egg Harbor, NJ.
She is survived by 5 children, Eileen Harkins (James) of West Chester, Ohio, William Zihala (Diane) of Little Rock, Arkansas, Betty Jean (Gary) of Alexandria, VA, Kathleen Zihala of Wilmington, DE and James Zihala of Fords, NJ. Providing her with great joy and pride are beloved grandchildren, Kelly, Emily, Jacquelyn, William F., Christine, Cheryl, Robert, Mary-Kathryn and Molly. Seven precious great-grandchildren include William, Andrew, Cole, Carter, Rory, Tommy, Kate and one on the way in November 2020.
Also surviving Betty are siblings, Joseph, Kathleen and Gerry. She was predeceased by her sister, Nancy.
We wish to thank the Hospice team at SOCH for their loving care of our mother, providing support and solace during this difficult time. Our heartfelt appreciations to Michelle Roberts for her devotion during Mom's home care.
A Mass of Christian burial will be held Monday, June 8, 2020, 11 AM at St. Theresa Church, Little Egg Harbor, NJ. Burial will take place at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in East Hanover, NJ the following day.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory to National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20814 or St. Theresa Catholic Church Little Egg Harbor, NJ.
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