Last December, Eleanor Norris was the center of attention in a very crowded room with people lining up to meet her and congratulate her on turning 100-years-old.
Friends of Norris say she died in her sleep Thanksgiving night.
The Norwell woman donated 100-acres of land in 1970 which helped form the 129-acre Norris Reservation in Norwell center.
The South Shore Superintendent for the Trustees of Reservations, Ed Pitcavage, says that with 2 miles of trails, ponds, and a boathouse, the Norris Reservation is a community gem. But Pitcavage, a Norwell resident, was also Norris’ neighbor.
“She was one of the most generous ladies I’ve ever met. She gave all that land and lived a pretty simple life afterwards. She certainty wasn’t overly wealthy by any stretch of the imagination. She really wanted the property to go to the community and have people enjoy her land,” says Pitcavage
Norris broke her hip earlier in the year and moved to an assisted living facility in Duxbury. But about a month ago, Pitcavage along with Norris’ friends took the 100-year-old woman back to the popular reservation she helped create. “When in the trustees’ truck and did a tour of the property and she still remembered every little section and talked about how they used to have a cabin on the North River and when they had parties there. It was a great time,” explains Pitcavage
Norris’ friends say she was very active up to her passing, calling her a great environmentalist who was a lot of fun.
Norris will be privately buried beside her late husband in Norwell center. Plans for a public funeral service have not been announced.