CAMDEN — Robert and Nancy Trone died within hours of each other at the Sussman House, the epitome of their long beautiful life together, surrounded by grace and a legacy of love.
Both 89 years old, they were born in Queens, New York, and began their lifelong courtship in the seventh grade. They married in 1951, a devoted partnership that was celebrated for 68 years.
Robert graduated from Williams College in 1952, and was enlisted as a Military Police officer in the Korean War. Stationed in Heidelberg, Germany, for a year, Nancy had the solo adventure of her life taking the Queen Mary across the ocean to join him.
Upon returning to Staten Island, New York, Nancy graduated from Queens College in 1953.
With the luck of the Irish, Robert spent a summer teaching tennis to the Merrill children in Southhampton, and Mr. Merrill invited the young athlete to join the financial training program at Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Beane. Thus began Robert’s successful 35-year career in investment banking with Merrill Lynch in Manhattan.
Settling in Summit, New Jersey, they raised their three red-headed girls with devotion, love and great joy.
Weekends were spent at their lake house in the Poconos, waterskiing, tobogganing, kayaking and enjoying time in the woods with no TV, and always lots of friends and laughter.
Nancy was an active volunteer in Summit with the Junior League and Overlook Hospital, and was a proficient knitter who calmly helped many frustrated knitters finish their projects at the local yarn shop, the Knit Wit. Her chocolate chip cookies were legendary.
Following Robert’s retirement, they moved to their dream house on Wheeler Bay in St. George, Maine, in 1985. There, they welcomed their grandchildren with open arms every summer and Christmas.
They enjoyed world travel, and as Robert golfed his way around the world, Nancy was always by his side, patient and smiling. They were welcoming hosts, and always kind to all.
Nancy continued to be an active volunteer at the Farnsworth Museum and Heavenly Threads. Robert enjoyed being on the water on his boat, of course named after his bride, the Nancy Ann. The painful loss of their daughter, Leslie, to melanoma in 2000 was a devastating change to the family. Leslie’s spirit continued to shine, but their grief was often overwhelming.
Nancy and Bob also lovingly cared for their eldest daughter, Linda, diagnosed with schizophrenia in her early 20s, for 40 years.
Following Nancy’s decline with dementia, and a severe stroke, they moved to Quarry Hill, in Camden, in 2016. Their final years together were cozy and comfortable, as Robert devoted every day to staying by Nancy’s side.
Nancy’s loving presence was strong and sweet. Her fierce will to live went beyond any medical explanation…she simply lived for her husband, and was determined not to leave him despite being under Hospice care for nearly two years.
Their epic love story continued through their death, as Robert died holding Nancy’s hand…and Nancy died less than two days later.
They are survived by Nancy’s sister, Joan Collins; Robert’s sister-in-law, Margaret Trone; their daughters, Linda and Cynthia; grandchildren, Justin and Evan Chapman (Sarah), Jackson, Kayla and Hadley Rose Berger; son-in-law David Chapman (Susanne); nieces Alice and Rosie Trone, Carole Johnson (John), and Kathy Leoffler (Frank); nephews, Jim, Dan (Denise) and George Andrew (An-Me) Trone, and John Collins (Alison). And all the children of their nieces and nephews who they welcomed to their home throughout the years.
A burial service will be held later this year at Crest Lawn Memorial Gardens in Marriottsville, Maryland, where they will rest in peace next to their beloved daughter, Leslie.
Arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock Street, Rockland.
To share a memory or condolence with the Trone family, please visit their Books of Memories at www.bchfh.com.