March 14, 1924 – February 8, 2019
Shirley (Blitz) Mandel, of Niceville, FL passed away peacefully on February 8, 2019. She will join her beloved late husband, Bernard in eternal rest. Born in New York, NY on March 14, 1924 to Dorothy (Florman) and Max Blitz, she met her lifelong best friend and future groom at the tender age of 11. From then on, with the exception of World War II, the two were inseparable until his passing in 2013.
Shirley did well in school, graduating from Walton High School in 1939, just 3 months after her 15th birthday. Though she had the opportunity to attend college, it wasn’t economically feasible so she entered the workforce. She and Bernie married in 1942, setting up their household until he left to serve in World War II. Upon his return, they set their sights on family and, between 1945 and 1951, had three children.
In April, 1949, they purchased their first home in Bayside, New York where they raised the children. When the youngest was in high school, and old enough to be home alone after school, Shirley returned to work as a secretary at Joseph Alliger and Associates, where she became a self-taught bookkeeper as well.
She and Bernie moved from Bayside to Putnam Valley, NY, into a house that Shirley designed and they had built. She then took on the job of handling the bookkeeping at the family business, Mechanical Engraving Co., Inc.
Eventually they downsized to a condominium in Valley Cottage, NY and, upon their retirement, became first snowbirds and then full-time residents of West Palm Beach, FL. They then moved back and forth between Boynton Beach and Niceville, FL.
Along with travel, Shirley most loved family and friends. On every trip they took, they returned home with more lifelong friends, and also raised the children in constant contact with cousins on both sides of the family. Their friends in Bayside were like extended family, and the cousins were all connected in the Family Circle. They often travelled with those cousins as well as the neighbors.
Shirley is survived by two sons, Jeffrey and his wife Suzanne Mandel of Gaylordsville, CT and Edward and his wife Adela of Niceville, FL. In addition, he is survived by nine grandchildren: Matthew (and Casey) and Paul (and Christine) Bernold, James (and Tracy) Mandel, Tina (and Andrew) Gottshall, David, and Richard (and Tracey) Wermuth, David (and Rebecca) Mandel, Rachel (and Eric) Luoma, and Deborah (and James) Caldwell 13 Great Grandchildren and 1 Great-great grandchild. She is predeceased by her beloved Bernie and a daughter, Linda.