Obituary for Eleanor C. Matthews (Dirrigl)
Eleanor C. Matthews (Dirrigl), aged 84, died peacefully on October 31, 2017 at home in Moultonborough, NH. Eleanor was born November 19, 1932, in Coxsackie, NY, the daughter of Bavarian immigrants, Jacob and Sophie (Zankl) Dirrigl.
Eleanor was a graduate of the Albany Business School and worked as the personal assistant to the NY State Commissioner of Health. In 1954, Eleanor married the love of her life James B. Matthews, and spent the next few years traveling the east coast as Jim’s career warranted. Having been raised along the Hudson River, as a young girl she had an affection for the riverboats as they would pass by. This passion carried into her adult life where Eleanor and Jim spent many memorable times with friends aboard cruise ships circling the globe. She relished her time aboard the Queen Elizabeth 2 ocean liner, and enjoyed the view of the M/S Mt. Washington as it passed by her home later in life.
After some time living in Pittsfield, MA, Eleanor and Jim settled in Wayland, MA where they raised their two daughters. In addition to raising her family, Eleanor thoroughly enjoyed reading, gardening, and designing floral arrangements, always giving back to the communities where she resided. While living in MA, Eleanor was an active Board member and served as President of the Woodridge Garden Club. She represented the club in the Garden Club Federation of MA, and organized club participation for major flower shows, including the Art and Bloom and the Boston Flower Show where she won several blue ribbons and best of show awards. Eleanor was a volunteer at the Danforth Museum in Framingham, served as a Girl Scout leader, and spent many hours helping the staff at the Parmenter Health Center in Wayland.
Her faith was also very important to Eleanor. She could often be seen serving as a Eucharistic minister or creating floral arrangements for the services at Saint Ann’s in Wayland.
Later in life, Eleanor and Jim made their summer residence their eventual home in Moultonborough, NH. The Moultonborough Public Library was her second home, a place where she spent countless hours. With the Friends of the Moultonborough Library, Eleanor was a hard-working member for many years, serving as the president from 2008-2010. There she organized successful house tour fundraisers, annual author luncheons, and other popular programs. She received the Mary Rice Award in 2011 for exceptional volunteer service and her contributing role with the new library project. She was also one of the library’s faithful and much-appreciated Wednesday volunteers, shelving books, assisting patrons and other volunteers, watering plants, and helping with countless children’s programs. The highlight of each summer for Eleanor was the annual 4th of July book sale and parade through downtown Moultonborough.
She served as a Eucharistic minister at Saint Charles Borromeo in Meredith and cherished the many friends that she made over her lifetime.
Eleanor is survived by her husband of 63 years James B. Matthews, her daughter Tracy Peter and husband James Peter of West Newbury, MA., her daughter Kelly Young and husband Michael Young of Portsmouth, NH., her brother Jacob Dirrigl and wife Eva Dirrigl of Ravena, NY, her sister Ann (Dirrigl) Buchanan of Athens, NY, and her brother-in-law Robert Matthews and wife Gerri Matthews of Port St. Lucie, FL. Grandma will be fondly remembered by her loving grandchildren Daniel Peter, Mark Peter, Stephanie Peter, Connor Young, and Spencer Young, and nephews and nieces Monica Stilwell, Lisa Grady, Jacob Dirrigl, Jr, Nicholas Buchanan, Mark Matthews, and pre-deceased by her nephew Michael Matthews.
As an expression of sympathy, donations can be made to the Friends of the Moultonborough Library, PO Box 150, Moultonborough, NH 03254-0150.