Mary G. Haber ("Gaye") passed away on May 18, 2014 in New Smyrna Beach, FL. She was born Mary Grace Ledet on December 16, 1925 in New Orleans, LA. Gaye spent her youth in New Orleans, where she attended parochial boarding school and lived in a bilingual (French/English) household. Following her graduation in 1946 from LSU Baton Rouge, LA, she worked as a wholesale buyer for Maison Blanche in New Orleans. In 1947, she married her beau Joseph Haber following his graduation from Tulane Law School, and shortly afterwards they migrated north to Pennsylvania, finally settling in West Orange, NJ, for 37 years. After 39 years of marriage, Joe passed away in 1986. Gaye subsequently retired to New Smyrna Beach, FL in 1992.
Gaye is survived by her 4 children: daughter Pamela and her husband Kara Puketapu of Wellington, New Zealand; daughter Lynn of Kennebunk, ME; son Craig of NYC; and, son Mark and his wife Kathryn Haber of Denver, CO. Also, 8 grandchildren: Rachel, Tess, Harry, Jake & Luke Haber, all of Denver; Melissa and Ryan Haber of Piscataway, NJ; and, Mahina Puketapu of New Zealand; as well as 1 great grandchild: Chase Puketapu of New Zealand.
Gaye was an active member for four decades in the AAUW (American Association of
University Women), devoted to raising awareness and funds to enable women of all walks of life to advance their education. She was honored as Member of the Year in 2007 by the New Smyrna AAUW Branch. She was also an active participant in the Unitarian Church in both NJ and Florida. As a member of the Smyrna Yacht Club for two decades, she enjoyed the indoor and outdoor dining and social activities.
Gaye is well remembered for her outgoing personality, contagious smile and fabulous Creole-influenced cooking skills. She was an avid reader and she loved to talk to everyone, friend and stranger alike. Southern hospitality remained her trademark. Her most enduring and endearing qualities of humility and gratitude remain uplifting lessons to us all.
Many thanks to special caregiver Susan Strader of New Smyrna Beach, whose devotion and kindness enabled Gaye to retain her dignity, independence and a full life. Gaye is predeceased by her father Angelo Emile Ledet, mother Noelle Templet Ledet, brother James Ledet and sister Mercedes Ledet Botz ..
Donations, in lieu of flowers, can be made to your local soup kitchen or the New Smyrna Branch of the AAUW.