Nellie J. Hubbard left her earthly burdens on April 7, 2022 to join her beloved Chuck on her next great adventure. To have met Nel, you might not have thought of her as one for adventure, but hers was a life of family, dedication, kindness, hard work, and she would go anywhere to help her family and friends. Nel was born in Eindhoven, the Netherlands in 1932 to Klaasje and Henri Blok. She learned the skills of knitting, sewing and embroidery from her mother and used those talents to provide handmade sweaters, clothing, curtains, and even darn socks. Along with her parents, sister Greet, and brother Henk, Nel lived through the hardship of Nazi occupation during World War II. After the war, Nel studied and worked as a nurse in Amsterdam. In 1957, she decided that there must be more to life than working and set out on a ship for America to see something of the world. She worked as a nanny and visited her Tante Nellie in NY. On one of her days off, she visited NYC with a friend from the journey overseas to see the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Chuck Hubbard and a friend (who had been on that same ship) also chose that rainy Sunday for a museum trip. After the two pairs met by chance, they went out for dinner. Chuck was impressed by Nel’s warm, self-assured, frank nature and they continued to see each other. After a few short months, they were engaged and she had to return to the Netherlands. Chuck followed after a few months to marry her and they started their life together, buying a VW beetle from the factory and traveling Europe. They settled in New York, Nel learning how to cook from a cookbook, learning how to drive and ski. They raised 3 daughters, Petra Hubbard (Plano TX), Linda Krusen (Oak Ridge, TN with husband Al and children Andrew and Sophia), and Erica Dellwo (Spokane, WA with husband Joe). The kitchen and flower gardens were Nel’s domain and she turned out wonderful meals from scratch, often using vegetables from Chuck’s vegetable garden. Weekends were spent hiking, canoeing, skiing, skating on frozen ponds, visiting, gardening, going into Manhattan for the museums topped off with dinner in Chinatown. Nel and Chuck enjoyed classical music, dance, and opera, travelling and spending time with family in the U.S., Canada, and throughout Europe. Nel’s maternal nature benefitted many children and families over the years. When her grandson, Andrew, was born she said he was “the cake” and then her granddaughter, Sophia, was “the frosting.” Nel and Chuck got to experience the fun of being grandparents and treasured those relationships. Nel and Chuck became members of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rockland, volunteering their time and becoming part of the church family. She leaves behind many friends and family. In her final days, Nel enjoyed revisiting shared memories and wanted us to know that she was ready to go. She requested no services but encouraged us to have a nice dinner and raise a glass to her. Proost!
The family wishes to thank Hospice of Spokane, the Rockwood Retirement Community and their resident’s Foundation for supporting Nel during her final days. If you wish to make a donation in her honor, please consider the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rockland (uurocklandny.org) or Meals on Wheels (mealsonwheelsamerica.org) just two of the organizations to which she volunteered her time.
A private family gathering will be held at a later date.
To plant a tree in memory of Nellie Hubbard, please click here.