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Eileen N. McWilliams


April 9, 2010


Eileen N. McWilliams, 91, of 16 Sunbury Road Danville PA (Riverside) passed away Thursday, April 8, 2010 at Emmanuel Nursing Center at Maria Joseph Danville PA.  She was born January 24, 1919 in Yeovil, Somerset, England the daughter of the late Fred and Helena Elizabeth Parkins Harrison. 

Eileen graduated from high school in England, and began working in Arnold’s glove factory. A short time later, she worked in Aplin & Barrett's, a St. Ivel Cheese factory; where they manufactured cheese and other dairy products In 1939, when WWII started, all single people had to help with the war effort.  Eileen worked on the Great Western Railway loading and unloading railroad cars to do her part. Eileen said the R.R. cars carried everything from canned goods to coffins to glass windows; anything nonperishable. Eileen also helped in the war effort by taking her turn as a compulsory fire fighter who extinguished fires caused by the incendiary bombs which caught fire after being dropped over Yeovil by German bombers.   

During the war, Eileen met her late husband, Paul E. McWilliams, who was stationed in England during part of his service in the U.S. Army.  On May 12, 1945, soon after the war ended, Eileen & Paul were married at Holy Trinity Church in Yeovil,  Somerset, England. They were married for 62 years. 

After an honorable discharge from the military, Paul returned to Danville, and Eileen followed soon after, via ship, the U.S.S. Washington; thereby becoming the second war bride to arrive in Danville, Pa.  On November 10, 1952, Eileen became a "naturalized citizen" of the United States. 

On May 20, 1971, Eileen began working at Geisinger Medical Center as a pharmacy courier technicianShe worked there in that capacity for 13 ˝ years retiring Nov. 26, 1984. 

Eileen was a member of Grove Presbyterian Church, Danville and for a time belonged to an English Bride's Club where she enjoyed getting together with other women who were war brides. 

In her earlier years, Eileen enjoyed knitting, gardening, reading and going to flea markets. More recently, she enjoyed feeding the birds and squirrels, and listening to her favorite radio programs.  Throughout her life, she most enjoyed getting together with family for birthdays, picnics, and at the holidays, as did her late husband, Paul, who preceded her in death on Oct. 9, 2007.  Prior to her health preventing her from getting out & about, Eileen loved to go shopping, and out to lunch or out for coffee with her daughter

Eileen is survived by her daughter, Maureen, and her husband, Dennis N. Wildt and one grandson, Dennis N. Wildt II, and his wife, Rhonda, and two great granddaughters, Sarah and Alexis Wildt.  Eileen is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews living in both the U.S. and the United Kingdom.  In addition, Eileen is survived by three sisters-in-law, Barbara Harrison, England and Regina Hartzell, Bloomsburg, PA. and Florence McWilliams, Danville, PA.  In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by three brothers: Robert Harrison, Fred Harrison, and William Harrison, and one sister, Kathleen Harrison, all of England.  

Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Graveside service to be held Monday, April 12, 2010 at 12:00 Noon at Odd Fellows Cemetery 1402 Bloom Road Danville PA with the Reverend Lee Barnhardt of First English Baptist Church Bloomsburg PA  officiating.  In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Shriners Hospitals for Children directed for any of the following:   Philadelphia Orthopedic Hospital or Boston Burns Hospital or Irem Hospital Transportation Fund c/o Irem Shriners PO Box 307 Dallas PA  18612-0307. 

Arrangements are under the direction of Visneski Funeral Home, Inc. 10 W Mahoning Street Danville PA.  www.visneski.com

 


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