Remembering Anne “Hope” Crawley: Beloved Mother and Writer, Dies at 87


Beloved mother and grandmother, Anne “Hope” Crawley (nee Savage), 87, died peacefully in her home on July 24, 2020, after a long struggle with Parkinson’s disease. She was with her loving children, Joe and Anne, who cared for her during her difficult illness. Hope and her late husband Frank were married for 56 years.

As a Montclair resident for over 60 years, Hope was active in many parts of the town’s life. As a longtime member of the Church of the Immaculate Conception (now St. Teresa of Calcutta Parish), Hope served as president of the Parish Council and taught Christian Formation classes when her children were young. She volunteered weekly at the Salvation Army, where she helped its guests get clothes and soap for showers and cooked regularly for Meals on Wheels.

Hope was a writer and photographer, who liked to share her love of travel with her readers. She wrote and developed her own photographs, in a little attic dark room, while raising eight children in Montclair. Her articles appeared in Family Circle, Woman’s Day and Yankee Magazine. Later, she worked as a newsletter editor and publicist for trade organizations, including Hobby International, and the Hemophilia Association of New Jersey. After she retired, Hope hosted bi-weekly book groups, participated in a Montclair meditation group, volunteered weekly at the Salvation Army on South Fullerton street, and attended daily mass at Immaculate Conception. She was a devoted member of the early-morning water classes at the Montclair YMCA, where she enjoyed a close community of Y enthusiasts.

Hope was born in Morristown, NJ and spent most of her childhood in Waterbury and Watertown, CT. She attended Trinity Washington University (Class of 1954) in Washington, D.C. and was active in their alumni community.

Hope Crawley was known for her generous hospitality — her dining room table was crowded at holidays — and her careful listening.

Hope is survived by her eight children: Patricia D’Ambrosio and husband John of Andover, MA; Anne Mernin and husband Michael of Montclair; Michael Crawley and wife Agnes of South San Francisco, CA; Joseph Crawley of Montclair; Mary Lea Crawley and husband Rob Pratt of Madison, NJ: Matthew Crawley of Charleston, SC; and Paul Crawley and wife Christine of Glen Rock, NJ. Hope leaves 15 grandchildren including John, Paul, Maria, Ryan, Emily, Nikki, Joseph, Kaitlyn, Henry, Hope Pratt, Alison, Taylor and Brandon and her great grandson Matthew. She is greatly missed by her dog, Ginger.

Hope believed in the power of love and forgiveness. She felt blessed to live her adult life in Montclair and gratitude for the community at the Newman Center at Montclair State University, Immaculate Conception, the Montclair YMCA, the Salvation Army and St. John’s Episcopal church. She was deeply inspired by her friends on Montclair Avenue and the unending care and grace of that special neighborhood.

Due to the unfortunate circumstances of COVID – 19, a memorial will be planned at a future date. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Parkinson’s Foundation.

Father Benny of Montclair’s
Saint Theresa of Calcutta Parish will generously offer this Sunday’s 11 o’clock mass to the memory of Hope.

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  1. We are grateful to Montclair, our neighbors on Montclair Avenue, and to Mom’s innumerable friends who’ve loved, laughed, read, meditated, and walked through much of her life with her–she loved each of you as she did each of us. Mom would so often say how much her friends, her neighbors… Montclair and especially her faith and church meant to her.

    Thank you for all your many kindnesses to our parents. Those of us who are quarantined or too distant will join you at Mom’s Mass in Spirit.

    With love,
    The (Crawley) D’Ambrosio clan

  2. One of the kindest human beings I ever met. I remember her patience as she listened to Salvation Army visitors. Perhaps people who were seldom listened to, or accorded such respect. The sweetest person. The world has lost a great spirit, but heaven has gained another angel. Hope, your work is done here, job well done. RIP. Nancy Mehegan

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