Barbara Cole Eldridge
September 16, 1922 – January 29, 2020
Barbara Cole Eldridge died peacefully on January 29 at home with family around her. She was 97.
Barbara, the only child of Herbert Norman Cole and Lydia Creesy Cole, was born and raised in Beverly, MA. She married Edgar "Duke" Eldridge, also from Beverly and a recent graduate of the US Naval Academy, in 1943. Then began the challenges of active military service during war time followed by the transient life of a Naval officer's family. After 26 years in the Navy, Barbara's husband retired and embarked on a second career at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. After moving every few years for almost 3 decades, Barbara lived in Charlottesville for almost 50 years. She finally made her way home to Massachusetts and her beloved Cape Cod in 2014.
Barbara loved life in the Navy. The frequent moves and extended periods when her husband had to be away were more than offset by the supportive community of friends and several nice locations. She was a skilled knitter, bridge player, and home decorator. Barbara loved her various pets, and was a strong advocate for the SPCA in Charlottesville. She was a well-read fan of American and British history and served as a docent at Thomas Jefferson's home, Monticello, for 21 years. Most of all, Barbara had a wonderful sense of humor.
Barbara was pre-deceased by her husband of 57 years and by her eldest son, Randall. She is survived by her daughter-in-law Margot Eldridge of Mesa, AZ, her son Peter and daughter-in-law Celia of Kemp, TX, and daughter Anne Koehler and son-in-law Steven of Orleans, MA. She is also survived by eight grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren.
A funeral service will be held at Church of the Holy Spirit, Orleans, MA on February 15 at 11:00 am. Inurnment will take place at the US Naval Academy on April 17 at 10:00 am. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Broad Reach Hospice (1455 Main Street, Chatham MA 02633), the Charlottesville Albemarle SPCA (3355 Berkmar Dr., Charlottesville VA 22901), or Heifer International. For online condolences, please visit www.nickersonfunerals.com.
No services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Barbara Cole Eldridge
February 11, 2020
I worked with Barbara 30 years ago, as a guide at Monticello. She and her friend Marguerite took me under their wing, helped me and guided me, and mostly made me laugh. Barbara was so fun and funny and full of mischief and kindness both. I am so grateful to have known her.