On Monday, November 25, 2019, Geraldine E. Robertson, mother of four children passed away peacefully at the age of 85. After a lifetime of service to her community and support of her family, she was fully prepared to be with her lord. Geraldine was born on August 2, 1934, in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania. She was one of six children born to Blanche and Edward Tessmer. Geraldine was the first young woman in her family to attend college, King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, where she graduated with honors.
With strong appetence for education and a commitment to the development of young people, Geraldine forged a career as a school teacher. Over the span of her 40 year plus tenure, Geraldine positively influenced literally thousands of her students both at Pine Grove Elementary School in Rowley, Massachusetts and then at Triton Regional High School in Byfield, Massachusetts. Generations of local youth benefited from Gerry’s compassion and accountability. Her children’s friends (and their parents) frequently noted, “Mrs. Robertson is tough, but fair.” In addition to her teaching duties, Geraldine led the school’s drama club and AFS Foreign Exchange program often hosting students from other countries who were studying abroad. She earned recognition for exceptional performance being named Teacher of the Year in 1998.
Geraldine was active and well known in her community both for her commitment to her church, the Byfield Parish Church, and then in her retirement, to the Friends of the Rowley Council on Aging. Her days were filled with activities, social events, and travel to interesting places with friends from the senior community. Geraldine volunteered as Secretary for the Friends of the Rowley Council on Aging board.
As a single parent, Geraldine raised four children spread ten years apart in age. During this time she also pursued and earned a masters degree in counseling from Northeastern University. Regardless of what it was, she somehow still always found the time to attend her children’s events and activities. Geraldine left a legacy of service--her four surviving children all pursued careers in education or otherwise in the non-profit sector.
We loved our mother dearly. We respected her greatly. And, we are eternally grateful for all that she sacrificed and for the values she instilled in our family. Geraldine was quietly fierce, independent, compassionate, humble, forgiving, and loving.
Services in Geraldine’s honor will include visitation on December 7, 2019 from 9-11am at F, S, Roberts & Son Funeral Home, 14 Independent Street, Rowley, Massachusetts, followed by a funeral service that same day beginning at 1:30pm at the Byfield Parish Church, located at 132 Jackman Street, Georgetown, Massachusetts. A reception (held also at the church) will follow the services.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Geraldine’s honor to the Friends of Rowley Council on Aging, 39 Central Street, Rowley, MA.
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