Geraldine C. Fox (Holmstrom), 89, of Florham Park and formerly of Midland Park, passed away peacefully at her home on March 16, 2020.
Beloved wife to Frederick M. Fox. Devoted mother of Marian Rypkema, her husband Paul, Frederick M. Fox, Jr., his wife Judy, Peter Fox, his wife Cheryl, Therese Mauch, her husband Jim, Paul Fox, his wife Lynn, Elizabeth Killian, her husband John, and the late Geraldine Bartner. Cherished grandmother of 24 grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren and more on the way. Dear sister of Joan Holmstrom, June Holmstrom and the late Joyce Brandon. Also survived by her son-in-law Steve Bartner and his wife Natalie. Geraldine’s life was full of many wonderful relationships, including hers with Kevin Deering and Tom Indoe whom she thought of as sons, and many loving nieces, nephews, cousins and dear friends.
Gerry was an inspiration to many people. Her life was focused on her belief in God, her marriage and family, and a friendly ear to her clients in counseling. She led a full and vibrant life.
Growing up in Jersey City with her mom and 3 sisters she often spoke of the love and laughter shared together in those early years despite fragile finances.
Her 16th birthday party attended by Freddy Fox was the start of what was to become a 73 year courtship. Gerry and Fred married in 1953 and soon the family grew to include 7 children along with a series of German Shepherds. Stories and fun around the dinner table were the foundation of happy memories. She was a gracious hostess who would gladly add another plate to the table for frequent drop-ins. Her meals were plentiful, delicious and often enhanced by unmentionable amounts of butter!
As her family grew, Gerry held many counseling sessions over pots of tea at her kitchen table. This kitchen table counseling grew into a vocation when she went to college at the age of 47. In the ensuing years she juggled papers and tests, weddings and grandchildren with trips abroad with her husband, Fred. Her legendary love of cowboy coffee (no filters) and extra-large bags of M&Ms helped fuel her studies which culminated in two master’s degrees. Gerry’s intellectual curiosity, wisdom and sense of humor made her a trusted marriage and family therapist until she retired at the age of 84.
It is appropriate given today’s concerns to include the prayer printed on the back of the Mass card celebrating the 10th anniversary of the House of Peace where Gerry practiced for many years:
Have No Fear for what tomorrow may bring.
The same loving God who cares for you today
will take care of you tomorrow and every day.
He will either shield you from suffering or
give you unfailing strength to bear it.
Be at peace, then, and put aside all anxious
thoughts and imaginations.
Francis de Sales
Memorial services will be held at a later date due to COVID-19. Please check back for information.
Donations in Gerry’s name can be made to: The Geraldine Fox Bartner Fund at the Community Foundation of New Jersey, Morristown, NJ.
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