Elizabeth Ann Young Jennings (“Bette”), 80, of Fulton, died Saturday, November 5,
2022, after battling both dementia and ovarian cancer. Bette died at home, surrounded
by her family, and can be remembered for her honesty, compassion, strength,
independence, and sense of humor.
Bette was born on February 15, 1942, in Fulton, NY, to Joseph A. Young, Jr. and Mary
(McGinn) Young. She attended Phillips Street School, and graduated from Oswego
Catholic High School in 1959. She briefly attended Mercyhurst College, and went on to
finish business school in Syracuse. She began her work career as medical secretary to
Dr. Gerhardt Steinitz in Fulton. After multiple years of working for Dr. Steinitz, Bette
then worked for her father as the office manager at Young & Son Funeral Home in
Fulton for the majority of her working years.
Bette married Bob Jennings at Holy Family Church in Fulton on September 23, 1972.
Six years later, in 1978, they had their first and only child, Meghan Young Jennings.
Although Bette was a dedicated employee at her father’s funeral home, her heart always
belonged to her family. She was a devoted wife and mother, and always put the needs of
others before her own. She loved going for annual camping trips to Old Forge, and later
to the camp she and Bob had at Brennan Beach in Port Ontario. Bette and Bob also took
trips to either Old Forge or Lake George to celebrate their anniversary every year.
She was a believer in family dinners, and always put a meal on the table for the family to
eat together. Eating dinner with her family was a time she was able to relax and laugh.
She frequently hosted Thanksgiving and Christmas, when the extended family could be
together. She loved decorating the house for all holidays, and was partial to the season
of autumn and all of the colors that went with it. She loved spending time with her sister
and her sisters and brothers-in-law, her nieces and nephews, and her great-nieces and
Bette was always an enthusiast of the arts, particularly music, dance, and live theater.
She loved listening to Meghan play the piano at home, and fondly recalled Thanksgiving
trips to New York City in her childhood, where she would attend a Broadway show with
her parents and sister Christine. She loved attending Symphoria concerts when she
Bette loved animals, particularly dogs. Her most recent canine friend and companion,
Finnegan, was a constant source of joy for her. You could usually count on finding the
two of them cuddled together on the couch during the past year. She also loved
monkeys, and enjoyed watching them on trips to The Wild Animal Park in Chittenango
and the Rosamond Gifford Zoo in Syracuse.
She was very proud of her Irish heritage, and her fondest memory was the trip to Ireland
she took in 2018 with her husband Bob, daughter Meghan, and now son-in-law Gabriel.
On that trip, she was able to attend mass at St. Brigid’s Church in Oldcastle, County
Meath. The mass was said by Father Ray Kelly, whose singing Mom discovered on
YouTube, and she became an instant fan.
Bette was able to celebrate three milestones over this past year. Her 80th birthday was
this past February, and she was able to celebrate with family while watching a video of
her life that was painstakingly created by her nephew, David. She was present to give the
bride away along with her husband at her daughter Meghan’s wedding to Gabriel Dilaj
on July 24 of this year. The wedding took place in the backyard of Bette & Bob’s home in
Fulton, and was attended by family and friends from near and far. She was also able to
celebrate her 50th wedding anniversary with her husband Bob this past September,
surrounded by her beloved family.
She is survived by her husband, Robert Jennings of Fulton; her daughter, Meghan
Young Jennings and son-in-law Gabriel Dilaj of Syracuse, NY; her sister Christine
(Young) O’Bryan and her husband David F. O’Bryan of Fulton; sister and brother-in-
laws Judy & Albert Dannes of Lewes, DE, and Kathy & Peter Richardson of Fair Haven,
NJ; nieces and nephews David J. O’Bryan of Lyons, NY Bridget (O’Bryan) & Michael
Pluff of Oswego, NY, Jeffrey & Liz (Awtrey) Dannes of Arlington, VA, Casey Richardson
of Astoria, NY, Stephanie Richardson of Philadelphia, PA, along with great-nieces and
great-nephews Cecelia & Oliver Pluff, and Avelyn & Adelaide Dannes; her beloved dog
Finnegan, and grand-dog and grand-cat Tanky & Monster Mash.
Calling hours will be on Thursday, November 10, from 4-7 p.m. at Gates Funeral Home,
29 W. Genessee St., Baldwinsville, NY, 13027, and a Catholic Mass will be celebrated on
Friday, November 11 at 10 a.m. at Holy Trinity Church, 309 Buffalo St., Fulton, NY. In
lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Paws Across Oswego County, 2035 County
Route 1, Oswego NY, 13126, or St. Brigid’s Catholic Church in Oldcastle, Ireland (PayPal:
email@example.com ) in memory of Elizabeth Jennings.
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