Gertrude "Trudy" Whitaker Colosimo passed away peacefully on May 11, 2013 at Avamere Medical Center in Sequim, Wash. She was born on Sept. 23, 1925 to Charles and Edith Whitaker in Berkeley, Mich., and spent her childhood in Berkeley, growing up in a house that her father, a builder of Model T cars at Ford Motor Company, constructed by hand. As a teenager, Trudy's family relocated to the wilds of Maine where her parents started a dairy farm. Her love of animals and conservationism and her hard work ethic, had their early roots in these Maine years.
As a girl, Trudy had an adventurous spirit. At 18, she bravely left the quiet farmlands of Maine for the bustling avenues of Manhattan. A talented artist, she had a keen aesthetic sense and remarkable precision for detail. Living on the Upper West Side, she worked both as a model and artist, studying graphic art design for the fashion and apparel industry and ultimately working as a sketch artist, drawing advertisements in city newspapers.
In 1945, she married Dr. Edgar J. Dillon II, a Navy medic veteran whom she met at a USO dance. They settled in Simsbury, Ct., and raised three children, Edgar, Jeffrey and Diane. After her children had grown, she brought her affinity for keeping things organized to various administrative posts at the University of Hartford and St. Joseph's College.
Gertrude “Trudy” Whitaker Colosimo, 88.
After many years, Trudy retired and relocated to Fort Myers, Fla., to care for her aging mother. There, she married her second husband, Jack Colosimo, and lived in Fort Myers for 31 years. In 2006, she moved to Sequim, Wash., to be closer to her children and grandchildren. She spent her final years in the Olympic Peninsula's "blue hole" enjoying her family, while tending quietly to her flowers, wild birds, and her beloved kitty, Tigger.
A devoted mother and a quirky character about town, her presence and her spirit will be missed. Trudy is survived by her son, Edgar J. Dillon III (Nikki); and daughter, Diane M. Hammer (Brian); grandchildren, Colleen O. Dillon (John Olson), Sean J. Dillon (Lynn), Terry M. Hammer (Autumn), Shahilene E. Dillon (Craig Tomlinson) and Megahn T. Dillon (Joseph Wilkinson); and great grandchildren, Grace, Emmett, Theodore, Cameron and Wolfgang.
Trudy was preceded in death by her parents, Charles and Edith Whitaker; brother, Wallace Whitaker; sister-in-law, Betty Whitaker; husbands, Dr. Edgar J. Dillon II and Jack Colosimo; son, Jeffrey W. Dillon, and daughter-in-law, Maureen O. Dillon.
A private family graveside service will be arranged by Sequim Valley Chapel. Memorial contributions can be made to: Peninsula Friends of Animals, P.O. Box 404, Sequim, WA 98382.