Ms. Elise L. Fitzsimmons
Ms. Elise L. Fitzsimmons
Let us remember with thanksgiving the life and ministry of Elise L. Fitzsimmons, 65, of Becket, MA, who joined all the saints who from their labor rest on June 1, 2020. She was born on November 14, 1954 in Atlanta, GA, the daughter of Janet and Wendell Lavender.
She was the beloved wife of the Rev. Dr. M. Craig Fitzsimmons for over forty years. They were married when Craig was the associate pastor at Jesse Lee UMC in Ridgefield, CT. Craig served in the New York Annual Conference from 1975 until his retirement in 2018, pastoring UMC churches in Kensington, CT; Pleasant Valley, NY; New Caanan, CT; Waterbury, CT; Pleasantville, NY; and Clinton, CT. He also spent several years working in extension ministry in Missouri.
Elise loved cooking and baking and passed on those skills. She was also a quilter who appeared at many craft shows and had her own Etsy site. In her 50s, she earned a black belt in tae kwon do. An avid bird watcher, she traveled to Arizona to watch California condors released back into the wild. She loved to garden and many friends enjoyed her gifts of vegetables and flowers.
In her professional life she was a reinsurance underwriter for a number of companies in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Missouri and New Hampshire. She was the first woman to earn a BS in mathematics at Hofstra University, and then earned an MBA at Pace University. Her professional certifications included an A.Re. and C.P.C.U. She traveled extensively both for business and pleasure, and especially enjoyed visiting national parks, monuments and historical sites.
Her love for God and her neighbor was often shown through her contributions to church, food programs and numerous charities. She was a life-long member of The United Methodist Church.
Elise is survived by her husband, Craig, and by her daughters and grandchildren. Elise was the proud mother of three daughters, Rebekah (Robert Houston), Martha (Sam Partrick) and Abigail (Toby Hummel), and doting grandmother of Lily, Logan and James. She was devoted to her family and her faith. She also leaves behind her mother, eight siblings/step-siblings and numerous nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held at a later date at the First United Methodist Church of Pittsfield, MA. Burial will be private.
In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to United Methodist Loans and Scholarships, 1001 19th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37212, or to a charity of your choosing.