Bernice "Rene" HeptigBernice Irene Heptig of 1253 Hinging Post Road, Ithaca, passed from this life at her residence surrounded by her loving children on Tuesday, March 22, 2011 at the age of 82.

Rene (pronounced reen) was born to Elizabeth and Harry Dailey in Queens, New York, on January 5th, 1929. 

Few areas of intellectual rigor eluded Rene, and she had impressive ability to synthesize her experiences.  Her myriad of eclectic interests were reflected in her academic pursuits: Theology, Philosophy, and Chemistry, in that order.  She combined all in her profession, psychiatric nursing, a career she took on at the age of 42 after raising five children and sending them on their way.

Her spiritual life was an inspiration, and her intense faith was a beacon of Light for all who knew her well.

Her greatest passion however was children.  Rene's sparkle was brightest when she spent time with her five children, her sixteen grandchildren, and her seven great grandchildren.  Handing her one of the babies was truly a remarkable experience.  She lit up like Rockefeller's Christmas tree.

Rene was pre-deceased by the man of her dreams Larry Heptig.  She is survived by  loving siblings Dolly Dailey Hanly, Helen Dailey Grecki, William Dailey; devoted sons Lawrence “Chip” Heptig, Richard Heptig, and Joseph Heptig, devoted daughters Lise Heptig Swanson and Mary Heptig Auger; treasured grandchildren Michael and Chelsea Heptig, Emily, Joseph, Amanda and Matthew Swanson, Elise, Kate, and Will Heptig, Peter Lawrence,  Molly, and Megan Auger; Luke, Sam, Frank, and Grace Heptig; cherished great grandchildren Michael and Matthew Heptig, Greta, Ava,  Finnegan and Declan Swanson, Sasha Heptig Borkson, and other beloved family members.

A Memorial Mass will be held at St. James Roman Catholic Church, 17 Whig St., Trumansburg, on Saturday, March 26, 2011 at 12:00 pm with Father John Tokaz OFM Cap.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks those interested in making a contribution in Rene’s memory to kindly consider Hospicare, 172 East King Road, Ithaca NY 14850.