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Welcome to the memorial page for

Ethel M. (Colley) Whitney

March 29, 1921 ~ February 22, 2015 (age 93)

Troy -  Ethel M. Colley Whitney of Troy, NY passed away on February 22, 2015.

Ethel was the widow of Peter M. Whitney and the daughter of the late Bertha and Guy Colley (of Cohoes and Troy), and was predeceased by a brother Earl S. (Justine H.) Colley. 

Mrs. Whitney was employed for over 42 years at Behr-Manning (later known as Norton Company in Watervliet). She most notably worked as executive secretary and special assistant to the company CEO. 

She met her husband, Peter, an electrician, plumber, and ‘jack of all trades’ at Behr-Manning (where he also worked for over 40 years).

Ethel was a very religious and kind person and volunteered for many church events and programs when she was younger.  She was Salutatorian of her class at Troy High School and a graduate of Mildred Elley School. 

She was an artist and painter of beautiful outdoor scenery, a great cook and baker (especially pies and stews), an avid hiker (46 high peaks and towers) and lover of the outdoors. She enjoyed traveling and collecting souvenirs from those excursions. She enjoyed gardening, canning and making jams.  A volunteer for the local Red Cross and Salvation Army, Ethel was very patriotic and loved her country, serving as a volunteer at the Watervliet Arsenal during WWII.

During the Great Depression she was a seamstress and also helped make shoes and prepare meals for St. Patrick’s Church (19th Street in Watervliet) and in the kitchens in downtown Troy.

In the last 10 years of her life, she was blessed to have the able help and assistance of many caring friends, neighbors and aides who we would like to thank; Joyce Brimmer, Matt Spain, Rose Bielawa, Denny Carnner, Joyce Heber and Joe Traver. She so appreciated being able to reside in her home of over 85 years and was so thankful for that gift from the Lord. Most recently she was helped by many capable and caring people from Samaritan Hospital and the Van Rensselaer Manor and Rehabilitation Center. We salute her life and know her memories and spirit live on.

She is survived by two nephews, John (Christine) Colley and Robert (Clare) Colley and great nieces and nephews, Meghan and Moira Colley and Karla and Ben Colley.  Also a close relative, on Peter's side, was Dawn Pratt and her two sons, Andrew and Jacob of Waterbury, CT. Other Whitney relatives include, Mari Jo, Matthew, Alexander, Nicole and Sarah.

At this time, there will be no wake or memorial service, however, the family and close friends are planning a memorial service in the late spring.

In lieu of flowers contributions may be made in memory of Ethel Whitney to the Salvation Army Troy Corps 410 River Street Troy, NY 12180 or Cornerstone Community Church 570 Third Avenue, PO Box 386 Troy, NY 12182 . 


Charitable donations may be made to:

Salvation Army Troy Corps
410 River Street, Troy NY 12180

Cornerstone Community Church
570 Third Street, PO Box 386, Troy NY 12182



 Service Information

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