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Lorraine Lee (Scull) Salmon passed on August 11th, 2023. In the last months of her life, she showed her family her determination as she recovered from a broken hip while quietly tolerating the Lymphoma baring down on her body. Lorraine showed her family how to be brave by always being the bravest of us.
Lorraine passed surrounded by constant love and support from her husband, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and friends. Her family and friends cared for her as she had done for many throughout her life.
Lorraine was born at Westchester Square Hospital on May 25, 1939. She was the first daughter of three born to her parents, Clayton Scull and Lillian McGuire. At the age of 2, her parents moved to Newport News, VA, where her father was employed at the Newport News Shipyards. Lorraine and her sisters Barbara and Rose were all born three years apart.
Tragedy struck on a rainy day in November 1946 when Lorraine was seven, and her mother died of suicide. Due to her father's inability to care for her and her sisters, they spent more than two years at a foster home before moving to the Wakefield section of the Bronx to be raised by their Aunt Emma and Aunt Mae.
Lorraine had developed a bit of a Southern accent during her childhood in Virginia, which opened her up to some bullying by the local city boys in the Bronx. One day on her walk to middle school, she got in an altercation with a few boys. Words were exchanged, and perhaps a few punches, the boys on the receiving end.
Lorraine’s Southern accent faded over time and was replaced with her Bronx accent we all have grown to know and love. Lorraine was ever tough, had her wisdom teeth removed, and afterward, walked home from her appointment. Her nature was to be gentle and kind but forced up against a wall, she was tough, courageous, and brave, traits that served her well through her last days of life.
Lorraine finished middle school at PS 103 in May 1953. She then attended Evander Chlldes High School, the local public school for the Wakefield section of the Bronx. In school, she excelled, receiving an award for Citizenship and participating in Swim Club, “E” Club, and the Color Guard. In her high school yearbook, she declared her future plans to be “Nursing.”
After graduation, Lorraine was employed at the phone company in Manhattan, where she developed a lifelong friendship with Patricia (and Ray) Wolff and met and fell in love with her husband of 63 years, Thomas Francis Salmon. They were engaged on April 11th, 1958, and married on February 20, 1960.
Lorraine and Tom saved up and paid for their own wedding. Their honeymoon was spent the following Monday-Wednesday at The Bear Mountain Inn on the west bank of the Hudson River. They left their apartment in Queens that Monday morning and took public transportation. They both returned to work on that Thursday morning.
About nine months later, their first child Gerard Salmon was born, and soon after, daughter Lorraine in March 1962. Lorraine and Tom had spent time in Lake George and Rosendale in upstate New York and knew they wanted to move out of Queens to the “country.” Soon after, daughter Bernadette arrived in 1964. After renting a place in Rosendale in the summer of 1965, they settled in their first home in Forest Park in Rhinebeck, a home they resided in for 58 years and one Lorraine stayed in until her last days.
As a mother to Gerard, Lorraine showed her tolerance in ways one could not imagine. Gerry became captivated by reptiles and, at one point, had more than numerous snakes in his bedroom.
Living in Rhinebeck brought Lorraine much joy but sorrow too. After carrying her fourth child Thomas through a full-term pregnancy, they lost him a day after his birth. Ever positive and optimistic, she had faith and brought two more children into the world. Along came Maureen (Bean) in 1973 and Elizabeth (Beth) in 1975.
Lorraine had many accomplishments, but raising a family of five was her biggest. She opted to be at home and put her desire to become a nurse on hold to raise her five children and be there for them. Seeing her five children together over the years brought her joy.
In 1984, at 45, Lorraine pursued her dream and received her nursing degree from Duchess Community College. She did this while caring for five children during the day and attending night classes when Tom came home as a State Trooper. Lorraine passed her nursing exam on the first try. Although she never needed to use her degree, Lorraine spent many hours volunteering at Northern Duchess Hospital.
Lorraine was generous with her time in other aspects as well. She was a Girl Scout and Brownie leader to many of Lorraine and Bernadette’s classmates for many years. For years, Lorraine headed up the sale of girl scout cookies for all of Red Hook, and a favorite day in the Salmon household was when a partially full tractor-trailer of Girl Scout cookies made the delivery to our home. She often baked for school events and volunteered at her local church, helping with Sunday Bingo. She headed up the Raiders Sports Club and could always be found at the snacks table at a basketball game, track and field event, or just about any sporting event. Lorraine continued volunteering after her youngest daughters, Bean and Beth, left to attend college, receiving an award for all her years of service raising money.
Lorraine enjoyed traveling. She chaperoned a trip for Beth’s class in high school and visited Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. She also traveled extensively with her husband, Tom, and accompanied him on many business trips nationwide as he grew a thriving interview and interrogation consulting business.
Lorraine was stoic during her remaining few months of life and always put on a brave face. Her children visited on rotation to get her through the tough days and to ensure she remained at her residence as she wished. In her last days, Lorraine received visits from many close friends, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She made some new friends with the caregivers that would come and go, and we believe they made a new friend too.
Lorraine’s life was an example of how to live courageously. No matter what hardship was presented to her, she navigated life bravely. She had a calm manner about her and was optimistic and kind. She wasn’t one to spend much on herself but always gave to others in need, especially with her time. She was there to look after those who didn’t have anyone. Lorraine was always there for any aging relative or friend who was in need of help. She always showed compassion for all living things but especially children. She was all too happy to listen during conversations, and it was like pulling teeth to get her to talk about herself.
Lorraine found it hard to say anything negative about someone. It wasn’t her nature. She always had an innocence and was the first to laugh at herself.
Lorraine cared about her impact on this earth. She tried to have what was needed and not what was wanted. She was ahead of her time when it came to recycling and put great effort into it.
Lorraine’s love for and loyalty to her husband, Tom, and his for her, lasted a lifetime and was evidenced even in her last breath. Throughout her life, Tom affectionately called Lorraine “Scull,” a reference to her maiden name, and most recently “Puss” but she was also known as Grammy and Great Grammy to her grandchildren and great-grandkids.
Our brother Thomas always remained in our hearts and thoughts throughout the years. His birth and death are always remembered. He has been visited countless times over the years by Lorraine, Tom, and our family.
Lorraine will be laid to rest with baby Thomas, just shy of 53 years since he left us. We can’t think of a better place for our gracious mother to rest. As she hoped, she will join her son Thomas in this beautiful quiet cemetery resting on a hill just above the Hudson River in the hamlet of Rhinecliff.
Lorraine leaves this world a much better place than when she arrived 84 years ago. We wish she had more time to spread her light and positivity. She leaves behind her heartbroken husband of 63 years, Thomas F. Salmon, and her five children Gerard Salmon (wife Mary), Lorraine Salmon (partner Allen Menig), Bernadette Thompson (husband Michael), Maureen Bean Wrenn (husband Drew) and Elizabeth Salmon (Drew Moffat). Fourteen grandchildren Hunter Salmon, Katarina Salmon, Erin Salmon, Ashley Davis, Isabella Salmon, Sheri Monaco (Nick Monaco), Lindsey Vanetten (Erik VanEtten), Bryn Thompson, Kevin Thompson, Gavin Wrenn, Marist Wrenn, Boden Wrenn, Logan White, and Maisy White. Six great-grandchildren, Rhys, Charlotte, and Drew Grace Monaco, as well as Brooks, Bryce, and Max VanEtten. She is also survived by her nieces Carmela Cuillo, Suzanne Eisenlohr, Marybeth Wiley, Karrie Ann Mahoney, and her nephew Jason Wiltshire of Las Vegas, NV, as well as additional grandchildren Jessica Allen, Cherokee Jones, and Ivana, Martina, Michael and Steven Markota, and many great nieces, great nephews, friends, neighbors, and admirers.
Lorraine is previously deceased by her parents, Lillian Jones McGuire and Clayton E. Scull, son, Thomas Salmon Jr, sister Rose Cuillo, sister Barbara Jean Wiltshire, Aunt Emma Schmidt, and Aunt Mary (Mae) Jones.
A private celebration of life will be held by Lorraine’s immediate family, and her interment will be private.
Anyone wishing to honor Lorraine may consider donations in Lorraine’s memory to any of those listed, or one of your own, with acknowledgments sent kindly and with sympathy to firstname.lastname@example.org
St Judes Children’s Hospital - https://www.stjude.org/
Hudson Valley Hospice.org - https://www.hvhospice.org/
Alexis Joy Foundation for Post-partum Depression - www.alexisjoyfoundation.org--
To send an online condolence, please visit www.dapsonchestney.com