Troy - Elizabeth “Betty” Engster passed away peacefully at the age of 100 years, on September 13, 2018 at her apartment in Beechwood Retirement Community in Troy, NY. She was born Elizabeth Morton Wright on June 25, 1918 in Brooklyn , NY, just as World War I was coming to an end and while Woodrow Wilson was President. She would go on to live during 16 more Presidential administrations, 17 if you count Trump. She was known to her friends as “Betty”, however, to her family she was “Sweeney”, the matriarch and most important member of the family, the one that made everything happen. She was all of that and more to the Engster family, providing a wonderful sense of humor with lots of kindly advice.
Shortly after birth, she and her parents, Redfield K. Wright and Earle Hall Wright moved to the Village of Sag Harbor, a former whaling village founded in the 1700s, on the South Fork of Long Island, NY. Elizabeth was raised in her beloved Sag Harbor, graduating from Pierson High School. Elizabeth went on to attend Russell Sage College in Troy, NY from which she graduated as a Registered Nurse.
It was while at Russell Sage that she met Thomas “Tipper” P. Engster from Troy, NY who was attending Albany Medical College and from that moment on, the two were inseparable until Thomas predeceased her in May, 2001.
While Thomas finished his medical degree, Elizabeth was a visiting nurse in New York City, where they were married, shortly before Thomas left to serve in World War II. After the War, the two returned to Troy to raise their three sons and begin their family medical practice on Hoosick Road.
In addition to raising her family well, she was often the receptionist and nurse for Tipper’s family practice. She was an avid gardener, bridge player, traveler and golfer in between many family trips to the end of Long Island to be with her parents and sister’s family. She was a member of the Rensselaer County Historical Society, Rensselaer County Garden Club and The Country Club of Troy.
Survivors include her three sons: Peter (Mary Ann) Engster, of Glastonbury, CT; Paul (Annie) Engster, of Albany, NY; and John Engster of Troy, NY, together with her 8 grandchildren, Matthew, Katie, Jessica, Sarah, Hannah, Elinor, Amy and Paul and her four great grandchildren, Luke, Emmett, Harper and Vivian. Finally, Sweeney is survived by her dear sister, Cis Earle McGowin and her family, Chuck & Judy Lattanzio and Bruce & Karen McGowin from Southampton, NY, and Kathleen McGowin from North Creek, NY.
The family wishes to thank Dr. James Aram together with all of the staff from Samaritan Hospital as well as St. Peter’s Hospice team that provided amazing and wonderful care for Elizabeth during her last few weeks. Most importantly, the family wishes to thank the caretakers that provided truly remarkable care and attention for Sweeney: Amanda, Suzanne, Debbie, Chris, Deb, Carolyn, Briana, Michele and Robin. Thank you. Thank you.
Family and friends may call at the Bryce Funeral Home, Inc. 276 Pawling Avenue, Troy, NY on Tuesday, September 18, 2018 from 5 to 7 pm.
The funeral service will be held at 12 Noon on Wednesday, September 19th at the First Presbyterian Church (The Old Whaler’s Church), 44 Union Street, Sag Harbor, NY 11963 followed by burial at the Oakland Cemetery located on Jermain Street, Sag Harbor, NY where Elizabeth shall be buried next to her beloved Tipper, forever and ever.
In lieu of flowers contributions may be made in memory of Elizabeth Morton Engster to the First Presbyterian Church Sag Harbor, NY 11963.
First Presbyterian Church (The Old Whaler’s Church)
44 Union Street, Sag Harbor NY 11963