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 Norma Jean “Normie” <I>Blackmer</I> Dreimiller

Norma Jean “Normie” Blackmer Dreimiller

Birth
Ticonderoga, Essex County, New York, USA
Death 2 Jun 2013 (aged 79)
Ticonderoga, Essex County, New York, USA
Burial Ticonderoga, Essex County, New York, USA
Memorial ID 111812491 · View Source
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June 5, 2013
Norma Jean Dreimiller

Press-Republican

TICONDEROGA — Norma Jean (Blackmer) Dreimiller, 79, of Ticonderoga died Sunday, June 2, 2013, surrounded by family.

If one lives in the shadow of the pyramids, their wonders may be hidden in plain sight.

Her life exemplified that "Family makes all the difference." Born April 28, 1934, in Ticonderoga, she was the daughter of the late Stanley and Florence (Wells) Blackmer.

As a youngster, she was uprooted and relocated to Cleveland, Ohio, when her father's local photography business struggled. She remembered fondly riding city trolleys, and she developed a life-long love of baseball in general, and fondness for the Cleveland Indians in particular. Tragically, when in fifth grade, Norma lost her mother to a rare heart ailment and was sent to live with grandparents in Ticonderoga. This was the greatest bit of luck she ever had.

Her mother's mother raised her in a loving home that inspired not only Norma, but her children as well. Also in the early grades she met a wonderful life-long friend, Joan McCarthy Hier.

A graduate of Ticonderoga High School, Norma's love of learning inspired her to study subjects as diverse as archeology, psychology, and English grammar at North Country Community College. She especially enjoyed Egyptology and memories of viewing "The Treasures of King Tutankhamun" at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City in the 1970's. She proudly displayed a bust of Egyptian Queen Nefertiti along with scarabs and other museum mementos at her home.

She married John Casper Dreimiller on July 28, 1952, and had three sons. As a young woman, she worked in the business office of New York Telephone. Taking time out to start a family, she worked part time and eventually full time again. When the local NYNEX business office closed, she commuted daily to Glens Falls for 12 years with colleagues, eventually securing 25 years of service and full retirement.

She always joked, "I was retired for one day," almost immediately going to work at the Hancock House, the Ticonderoga Historical Society, a post that fed her love of learning. After several years, she became a docent at Fort Ticonderoga carefully answering the questions of visitors. If she did not know an answer, she would do research until she did, sometimes e-mailing visitors long after they had returned to their respective hometowns.

A prolific painter, Norma admired the works of Auguste Renoir, Toulouse LauTrec, Andrew Wyeth, and Edgar Degas. For many years reproductions of Degas' "Ballet Rehearsal" graced her walls, prompting one of her toddler grandchildren to ask, "When you were young, Grandma, were you a ballerina?" Her oil painting helped inspire one son, Mark, to become a trained printmaker and a grandchild, Rachel, to become a talented visual artist in her own right. Proud of her children and grandchildren, she bragged at every available opportunity.

"Normie", as she was called in later years, enjoyed extraordinary luck with friends. Her "Birthday Club," as it was called, yearly celebrated the nativity of each member with a dinner out -"courtesy of the other members." Joan Hier, Mary Arthur, Lil' Pratt, Della Hughes, Peg Broadhead, Viv Cossey, Mary Stanley, Joyce Hutchins, Betty Ann Arthur, Linda Osborne, Enid Bousfield, Margaret Carpenter, Jan Putnam, and many others enjoyed countless dinners out, many laughs, and good times.

A woman of great faith and optimism, Norma especially loved St. Mary's Parish Community. For many years, she volunteered at the school Library and weekly read to Karlene Gonyea's second graders. As for church attendance, missing Mass was "not an option."

In 2011, Norma suffered a debilitating stroke, but the kindness and care of Moses Ludington's Heritage Commons, the nurses and doctors of Hudson Headwaters, and her family, enabled her to live the last two years of her life at her beloved lake house, keeping tabs on the hummingbirds and woodpeckers, often sketching them. Her final stretch was made infinitely brighter and more fun due to the kindness of her special friends Nicole, Linda, Rikki, Lacy, and P. J.

One irony about her life never mentioned by Norma but not lost on her family: that an only child who lost her mother at an early age and was shipped off to a small upstate New York hamlet to be raised by relatives could become a career woman and live to enjoy a wealth of extended family and an abundance of true friends defies the odds. She was a wonder living in plain sight. How could all this good fortune find one person? That's easy. Normie always said, "Family is what it's all about."

She was pre-deceased by her husband, John C. Dreimiller, on September 14, 1989.

Survivors include three sons, John P. and his wife, Anne, of Ticonderoga; Mark A. and his wife, Lisa, of Rochester; and Matthew W. and his wife, Marcy, of South Glens Falls, as well as six grandchildren, Megan, John, Kelly, Nick, Rachel, and Maddie.

Relatives and friends may call from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, June 6, 2013, at Wilcox and Regan Funeral Home, 11 Algonkin St., Ticonderoga.

Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Friday, June 7, at St. Mary's Catholic Church of Ticonderoga. The Rev. Kevin D. McEwan, Pastor, will officiate. The Rite of Committal will follow at the family plot at St. Mary's Parish Cemetery of Ticonderoga.

Donations in Norma's memory may be made to St. Mary's School, 64 Amherst Ave., Ticonderoga, NY 12883, the Ticonderoga Emergency Squad, or simply "Pay it forward" with acts of kindness for others.


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  • Maintained by: McDreimiller
  • Originally Created by: Michael Wayne
  • Added: 5 Jun 2013
  • Find A Grave Memorial 111812491
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Norma Jean “Normie” Blackmer Dreimiller (28 Apr 1934–2 Jun 2013), Find A Grave Memorial no. 111812491, citing Saint Mary's Cemetery, Ticonderoga, Essex County, New York, USA ; Maintained by McDreimiller (contributor 48113409) .