WATERTOWN, NY — Barbara J. “Barb” Heiler, 80, passed away Friday, Aug. 9, 2019, in her home. She was the widow of Thomas G. Heiler, her husband of 48 years until his passing on Nov. 20, 2010.
Barb was born on March 18, 1939, in Watertown, NY, the daughter of Walter O’Neil and Gladys (Tryon) O’Neil and graduated from Immaculate Heart Academy in 1956.
She began a life time career as an accounting assistant working for AG Insurance Company after graduation until her marriage to Thomas G. Heiler on July 7, 1962, when they began a 22 year career in the U.S. Air Force traveling all over the world to include assignments in Manila, Philippines (Clark AFB); Austin, Texas; Torrejon, Spain; Bucks Harbor, Maine and Colorado Springs, Colorado until settling back to Watertown, NY where she was employed by Towsley & Gardner CPA’s and eventually Dragon, Benware & Co until her retirement in September, 1999 in which she moved to Port St. Lucie, Florida and enjoyed 20 years of retirement.
During her years of retirement, Barb was a lifelong member of the Irish American Club established in Savanna Club and was part of event planning coordination and ticket sales. She will be remembered by the club through the presentation of two scholarships next May, 2020 to two students of Port St. Lucie High School.
Until relocating to Port St. Lucie, Florida in September, 1999, Barbara was a parishioner of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church. Upon moving to Port St. Lucie, she then became a parishioner of Holy Family Church.
In addition to her activities with the Irish American Club, Barb enjoyed daily walks, exercise classes, reading, cooking, knitting/crocheting and needlepoint.
Her main enjoyment however was her family consisting of four children, two sons-in-law, two daughter in-laws, eight grandchildren, three step-grandchildren; two step great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins. Barb was a true matriarch of her family with her advice and wisdom often being sought.
She will be remembered for her quick wit, strong faith, and her quiet and strong disposition by friends and family.
Barbara is survived by four children and spouses, Robin (Donald) Converse, Watertown, NY; Steven (Mary) Heiler, Winter Garden, Fl; Terrence (Jennifer) Heiler, Watertown, NY; Susan (Fred) Donato, Watertown, NY; eight grandchildren, Abigail Converse; Brandon, Cassidy & Drew Heiler; Olivia and Colton Heiler; and Anthony and Dominic Donato; three step-grandchildren, Justine Bagley, Jordan Converse and Alexandra Mojica; two step great grand-children Jameson and Nora Bagley. She was predeceased by her parents Walter & Gladys O’Neil and a sister, Sharon Patterson.
Per her wishes there will be no calling hours.
A Funeral Mass is scheduled 11 a.m. Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church, 320 West Lynde Street, Watertown, with burial immediately after in Glenwood Cemetery. A celebration of life will be held at the Watertown Elks Club immediately thereafter.
Arrangements are with the Hart & Bruce Funeral Home, Watertown.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations be made in Barb’s name to the Treasure Coast Hospice, 5000 NW Dunn Road, Ft. Pierce, FL 34981.