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Elizabeth "Betty"'s Story

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Elizabeth "Betty" Jeanne Merkel, 89, of Lake Shore Road, peacefully slipped away from us on Jan. 8, 2018, and joyfully reunited with her loving husband, David.
She was born in Dannemora on Sept. 27, 1928, the daughter of Adrian and Frances (Ryan) LaFontaine who predeceased her.
Betty was educated at Mildred-Elley in Schenectady, N.Y., and later met David Merkel Jr. They married April 21, 1949. David passed away on May 22, 1977. She was also predeceased by her only sibling, Robert "Bobby" LaFontaine.
She was known to many as Betty, Betty Jeanne, Mom, and Nana, and was a spirited woman with a quick wit and infectious laugh.
Snowy-haired and sunkissed skin...Betty had a classic, timeless style. She wasn't an avid swimmer, but always lived on the water. Her days on the lake in Chazy were shared with her family, especially her grandchildren whom she adored. Winters were time to escape to Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., and soak up the sun on the beach, shop at Bal Harbour, and dine at Seawatch.
Betty embarked on once-in-a-lifetime adventures -- a cross-country road trip in a Buick wagon with her husband and children; cruising Alaska and Banff, and also visiting various countries. She collected treasures along the way and decorated her home with antiques and keepsakes to remind her of precious memories. Betty had great taste and was one tough cookie! Alongside the sepia-toned pictures of her mom, dad, and brother, Betty displayed photos of her children and grandchildren greeting her every morning at Camp as the sun rose over Lake Champlain.
Her energetic personality was apparent in everything she did in her life. Betty lived life to the fullest and leaves behind a legacy to be remembered by her four loving children, Deborah "Debbie" McNamee, Jill (Chris) Riley, David (Diane) Merkel III, and James "Jimmy" Merkel; six grandchildren, Bryce (Samantha) McNamee, Ryan (Molly) McMartin, Tyler McMartin, David Merkel IV, Lauren Anne Merkel and Sarah (Nick) Merkel-Goupil; and one great-grandson, Cole McNamee.
A funeral service will be held on Monday, January 15 at 11:30 a.m. in the R.W. Walker Funeral Home Chapel. A private burial will take place alongside her husband in Temple Beth Israel Cemetery in Plattsburgh.
In lieu of flowers, the family would like memorial contributions made to the Foundation at the CVPH Medical Center or the Elmore SPCA.
To share a photo, story, or condolence with Betty's family, please visit www.rwwalkerfh.com.
Arrangements have been entrusted into the care of the R.W. Walker Funeral Home, 69 Court Street, Plattsburgh, NY 12901.
Published on January 11, 2018
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