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Official Obituary of

Nelle Fairchild Rote

May 23, 1930 ~ March 15, 2024 (age 93) 93 Years Old

Nelle Rote Obituary

With loving remembrance, we announce the passing of our mother, Nelle Fairchild Rote, on March 15, 2024 at the age of 93.  She departed peacefully after living a full life of love, kindness and unwavering strength.

Nelle was born on May 23, 1930, in McEwensville, PA, a daughter of the late Phebe (Fisher) Fairchild and Edwin Fairchild, her beloved father, who also died on March 15 years ago.  She was also the niece of the well known WWI Nurse, Helen Fairchild.

Nelle was a 1948 graduate of Watsontown High School and pursued her secondary education at the former Williamsport School of Commerce, Bucknell University, Pennsylvania State University and Susquehanna University.  She made a career in writing, editing and consulting with publishers.

Nelle’s life-long aspiration was to publish a collection of letters she saved of her aunt, Nurse Helen Fairchild, who died on the front line in WWI from gas exposure in an operating tent.  She penned an article published in the DAR magazine, and then wrote a 384 page book Nurse Helen Fairchild WWI 1917-1918.  Nelle went on to commemorate Helen’s sacrifice by getting the bridge in Helen’s hometown named after her, the Nurse Helen Fairchild Memorial Bridge in Watsontown, PA.  Nelle’s lasting legacy is the fact Helen’s story has now been told throughout the world.

She was a member of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC, and a charter sponsor for the Women in the Military Service for the American Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery.  She was a lifetime member of the Marine Corps League Auxiliary, a 60 year member and regent of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Shikelimo Chapter, where she received the American Woman in History Medal.  Nelle was a member of the Pennsylvania Military Museum, the Warrior Run Fort Freeland Heritage Society, the Western Front Association, the American Legion Auxiliary of Lewisburg, the Civic Club of Lewisburg, and the Society of Professional Journalists.

She is survived by three loving children, Harry E. (Sue) Hefty, John B. (Rita) Hefty, and Susan E. Hefty DeBartolo; 11 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her late husbands, John A. Hefty and Keith Rote.

A Celebration of Nelle’s life will be held at 1:00 pm on Saturday, August 17, 2024 at Grenoble Funeral Home & Crematory, 308 Main St. Watsontown, PA.  Burial will follow in the Watsontown Cemetery.

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Memorial Service
August 17, 2024

1:00 PM
Grenoble Funeral Home & Crematory
308 Main St.
Watsontown, PA 17777
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