Noelle A. Bergmann, 84, of Saranac Lake, peacefully passed away on Nov. 15, 2023 at home surrounded by her loved ones.
Noelle was born on Dec. 7, 1938 in Rochester, the daughter of Cedric and Viola Bergmann.
Noelle moved to Saranac Lake at the age of 22 after graduating from Brockport University with a Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education. She later married Howard Ellithorpe with whom she shared two children, Benjy and Karen. Noelle worked for the New York state Department of Transportation from 1984 until she retired in 2004. Most locals remembered Noelle and her amazing smile from the years she spent operating and serving ice cream cones at The Big Dip (current site of The 1892 Bar and Grille) in Lake Clear in the late ’60s and early ’70s.
Noelle’s greatest passion, second only to traveling the world, was training her dogs and helping others via dog therapy. One of her proudest accomplishments was obtaining a certification from Therapy Dogs International for each of her beloved dogs. Noelle spent many years volunteering with her therapy dogs at the Bloomingdale Elementary School where she would read to the children. She loved seeing how happy and comfortable her dogs could make the students. In addition to volunteering at the school, the public library, the hospital and nursing homes, she spent much of her free time at the High Peaks Dog Club where she would teach her dogs, as well as others, agility, dancing and obedience.
After separating from Howard, Noelle found her life partner, Jim Derby, with whom she made a wonderful life in the house they built together in the woods of Vermontville, caring for their many dogs throughout the years.
Noelle was predeceased by her parents, Cedric and Viola, along with Howard and Jim.
Noelle is survived by her son Benjy Ellithorpe (Mary Smith), daughter Karen Ellithorpe (Walter Ellis), one sister Linda Beairsto, grandchildren Jesse Ellithorpe Betzold (Dean Betzold), Tyler Ellithorpe (Hannah Burnham), Harlee Stanton, Anna Ellithorpe and Adam Ellithorpe, great grandchildren Fariah Stanton, Delaney Betzold, Raelynn Lara, Noelle Ellithorpe, Bodhi Stanton and Archer Ellithorpe.
The family will hold a celebration of her life at a later date.