October 26, 1931 – January 5, 2019
Elizabeth Ann (Slattery) Newton, 87, passed away on January 5, 2019, in Omaha, Nebraska, from complications of respiratory failure. Born in Bellows Falls, Vermont, on October 26, 1931, to Patrick Francis Slattery and Elizabeth Frances (McNamara) Slattery, Ann spent her entire girlhood in Bellows Falls. In 1960, she and her husband John (Jack) Newton moved to Omaha, where they raised their three children and where Jack established his career at the University of Nebraska, Omaha.
She is survived by her children and their spouses: Trish McCauley (Mike McCauley) of Bentonville, AK; Peter Newton (Jackie Drane) of Austin, TX; and Chris Newton (Terri Newton) of Omaha, NE, as well as her grandchildren: Joe Strilka, Jake Newton, Jennifer McCauley, Taylor Newton, and Sarah Newton. She is also survived by her dear cousins Sally Ryskamp, Bill Simpkins, and Paul Slattery; and by many loving friends. In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her devoted husband of 57 years, Jack Newton.
Ann’s years in Bellows Falls were filled with many family activities, since grandparents, aunts and uncles, and cousins lived in or around Bellows Falls. Ann lost her father when she was only eight, so her mother began teaching in the local elementary school. Being an only child and the daughter of a teacher in a small town, she always said she could never misbehave because her mother would hear about it immediately! She rode her bike to deliver her grandfather’s lunch every day to the paper mill where he worked. Her grandmother taught her piano in the front parlor. As a teenager, she worked in the local movie house, selling popcorn.
Ann graduated from Bellows Falls High School in 1949 and enrolled in the Massachusetts General Hospital Nursing School in Boston. She was very homesick but made a success of her training and made many friends, living in the student nurses’ dormitory. After graduation, Ann and three friends wanted to experience a different part of the country, so they stuck a pin in a map and ended up at Ohio State University Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. It was a fortuitous move, as she met her husband, Jack, at OSU, having enrolled in his psychology class. Ironically, Ann and Jack had grown up less than 80 miles apart, Jack being from Schenectady, NY. Ann and Jack were married on September 11, 1954, at St. Charles Roman Catholic Church in Bellows Falls.
They lived in Fort Knox, KY, where Jack served his Army commitment, and then in New London, CT, for Jack’s job at Electric Boat. In 1960, with Jack wanting a career in academia, he and Ann and their daughter, Trisha moved to Omaha where Jack took a job at then Omaha University. So began Jack and Ann’s long affiliation with UNO, Jack eventually becoming a dean and Ann becoming a leader in the Faculty Women’s Club. Their sons, Peter and Chris, soon joined the family, by now living at 5611 Jones St., where Ann and Jack raised their children. Ann loved animals, so the family also included many four-legged friends over the years: cats Blackie, Daisy and Westy, and dogs Sylvia, Susie, Samantha, and Snickers.
Ann and Jack were wonderful and devoted parents. The family went back east every summer to visit the grandparents in Vermont and New York. One summer, Jack and Ann bravely took the kids on a six-week road trip to Alaska, camping all the way. They entertained often at the Jones Street house, hosting parties for the UNO psychology department and other faculty. They traveled the world on numerous tours and cruises, visiting all continents except Antarctica. Ann put her energies and her organizational and leadership skills to good use in the charitable organizations she was active in for many years: Assistance League of Omaha; Uta Hallee Girls Village; UNO Faculty Women’s Club; and Central High PEP.
Ann collected dolls from around the world, increasing her already extensive doll collection which included her favorites, Anna Lee dolls from New England. As a New Englander, Ann loved Macintosh apples, Vermont sharp cheddar cheese, and real maple syrup. She was proud of her Irish heritage, being descended from Irish immigrants on both sides of the family. She loved angels and the color blue. Ann enjoyed vodka tonics, margaritas, and shrimp cocktails, her favorite meal when eating out.
A visitation for Ann will be held on Sunday, February 3, 2019, from 3pm to 4pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by VIGIL SERVICE at 4pm. A Memorial Mass will be held on Monday, February 4, 2019, at 10:30am at St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church, 6116 Dodge St. followed by a luncheon in the church basement. A brief inurnment service will follow at Calvary Cemetery, 7710 W Center Rd. In lieu of flowers, friends and family are requested to consider a donation to the Assistance League of Omaha, 3569 Leavenworth Street, Omaha, NE 68105-1907, (402) 342-4288 or (402) 342-1396; website: alomaha.org.
Ann was a truly amazing lady. She loved to meet people and always seemed to run into someone she knew, no matter where she went. She was devoted to her children and grandchildren, who gave her such joy. She loved making photo collages of family events, trips, and parties. If you ever attended a gathering where she was present, you can bet you had your photo taken by her. Even as the years started taking a toll on her health, Ann had a positive attitude and kept on going, looking fabulous with her gorgeous white hair and in a sharp Chico’s outfit with an angel necklace.
The loss of Ann leaves a big void in the lives of her family and friends. All feel very blessed and grateful for Ann’s being in their lives and in their hearts. Her love and devotion will remain with us forever.