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Ellen D. (Douglass) Haith
October 16, 1944 ~ November 11, 2023 (age 79) 79 Years Old
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Ellen D. Haith of Trumansburg passed away on Saturday, November 11, 2023 at the age of 79.
Ellie was born in White Plains, New York on October 16, 1944 a daughter of the late Arthur and Jannet (Anderberg) Douglass. One of her great passions was singing, beginning in high school, and continuing with college choruses and madrigal groups at Wellesley and Cornell. Her life in music culminated with her 18 years spent as a professional with the Cayuga Vocal Ensemble. Ellie’s early daily work was as an editorial assistant at Doubleday and then Department Secretary for Comparative Literature at Cornell. Much of her subsequent life was spent as a wife, Mom and volunteer for many local organizations, including for the Boy Scouts, Trumansburg Conservatory of Fine Arts, Cayuga Nature Center, Trumansburg Tree Commission, and Church of Epiphany. Her major volunteer work was with the SPCA of Tompkins County where she filled several roles (starting as a dog walker) for over 25 years.
Over the 56 years of her marriage, Ellie and her family had their lives enriched by seven dogs – Phelps, Baggins, Brandy, Mariah, Charley, Annie, and Harry, along with many guinea pigs, a rabbit, and a very large snail named Whee. Only Harry, a poodle-bichon rescue, remains, and like the rest of us, he misses her so much.
In the late 1980s, Ellie began a major new adventure as a bus driver for Trumansburg Central School. This was very different from any previous activity, and she loved it. Her husband worried that with her new skill and driving license, she might eventually take up long distance trucking . Luckily, she was so attached to the bus work and student passengers that other possibilities had little appeal.
Ellie’s impact on her family and many community members might best be described by this paraphrase of T. S. Eliot’s dedication to his wife Valerie in The Waste Land, “She had made (our) land blossom and birds to sing there.”
Ellie is survived by her husband, Doug Haith; two sons, Robert Haith and Benjamin Haith; and two grandchildren, Isaac and Audrey Haith. In addition to her parents, Ellie was preceded in death by her daughter in law, Maria Stalnaker.
A Memorial Service will be announced at a later date.
The family asks those to make a contribution in Ellie’s memory to kindly consider the SPCA of Tompkins County, 1640 Hanshaw Road, Ithaca, NY 14850 or the Trumansburg Conservatory of Fine Arts, PO Box 1053, Trumansburg, NY 14886.