Toby Eisman, 76, of Tillson, New York, died Tuesday, October 8, 2019 at her home.
Born in Brooklyn, she was a daughter of the late Moses & Sadie Dolinsky Singer. Toby was a graduate of Brooklyn College, and had a long career in teaching, starting with substitute teaching while her children were in elementary school; then working full time teaching third grade at Edson Elementary School. An avid reader, Toby was a trustee of the Rosendale Library.
After retirement from teaching, Toby shared her eye for fashion with many while working at Chico's in Kingston.
Toby also loved to travel, and was able to explore much of the United States, Europe, and the Caribbean with her husband Al, as well as many of her friends.
Toby is survived by two sons, Michael Eisman of Kingston and Steve Eisman and his wife Bonnie Keilty of Brooklyn, and a brother, Stuart M. Singer of Ringoes, NJ. Her granddaughter, Lilith Mesidor and many nieces and nephews, including Gregory and Liana Eisman also survive.
In addition to her parents, Toby was predeceased by her husband of 44 years, Al Eisman, who passed in 2009.
The funeral service for Toby will take place on Friday, October 11, 2019 at Congregation Emanuel at 10:00 AM with Rabbi Yael Romer officiating.
Interment will follow in Montrepose Cemetery.
Simpson-Hammerl Funeral Home is honored to assist the family with the arrangements.
Memorial contributions can be made to Congregation Emanuel, 243 Albany Avenue, Kingston NY.
Eulogy for my Mother
I would like to repeat something I said ten years ago when my father passed: I hit the parent lottery to be blessed with parents like my Mother and Father. They have shown me by example how to be a loving and good person. Mom was the most caring person I have ever met. She had a remarkable ability to immediately establish a connection with people she just met, whether it was her students, her neighbors, or someone she met at a social event. She truly cared about what was going on in a person's life, and an amazing aptitude to remember the large and small details that were important to those people. The best evidence of her level of caring was to witness the overwhelming love and support my mother received from her friends and family while bravely and valiantly battling her disease. Over and over, I heard about how completely she was there for the people in her life.
I will always appreciate what you shared with me, mom: your love of reading across a wide variety of topics, your work ethic, your fighting spirit, and even your appreciation of All My Children. If only I was able to inherit your conversational skills. Well, at least I inherited some of your intelligence. Thank you for always being there for me, for being my daily sparring partner growing up, and for setting the bar high. You will be dearly missed by all who knew you. Enjoy the next phase of your existence, reunited with Dad.
Steve's Eulogy for Mom
My mom just wanted to give my brother and I a better life than hers. Which she always said would be fairly easy, since she grew up poor in Brooklyn public housing and both of her parents died young. She was both shocked and proud that she and my dad pulled it off. Mike and I got everything we needed, and most of what we wanted, as part of a loving home. Along the way, my mom got a better life as well. She accumulated a group of friends that would do anything for each other. She was all about her friends - the family she chose and that chose her back. And for that she was extremely fortunate and grateful. As many know, my mom struggled with a tough disease for the past few years, but the struggle was made much much easier due to her friends, so many heartfelt thanks to them. Her last words to me were - Do me a favor and live your life - which reminded me of a poem which I think she would enjoy called The Dash by Linda Ellis.
I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of a friend
He referred to the dates on the tombstone from the beginning...to the end
He noted that first came the date of birth and spoke the following date with tears
But he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years
For that dash represents all the time
that they spent alive on earth
And now only those who loved them know what that little line is worth
For it matters not, how much we own,
the cars, the house, the cash
What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash
So, think about this long and hard
Are there things you'd like to change?
For you never know how much time is left that can still be rearranged
If we could just slow down enough to consider what's true and real and always try to understand the way other people feel
And be less quick to anger and show appreciation more and love the people in our lives like we've never loved before
If we treat each other with respect and more often wear a smile
Remembering this special dash might only last a little while
So, when your eulogy is being read with your life's actions to rehash...
Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent YOUR dash?
These memories are from Marsha McDyre.
I met Toby in 1971, when she moved to Tillson. Her next door neighbor Sandi Giordano and I were friends, and Toby quickly became a close friend too.
Looking back, those days in Tillson with our young families were wonderful days. We watched our zucchini grow fat in our gardens and made a lot of zucchini bread! Toby and I would talk on the phone nearly daily, especially when we were stuck at home with sick kids or with heavy snowfalls in our yards. Toby introduced me to Constant Comment tea and I always think of her when I buy it. When IBM was expanding to Charlotte, South Carolina, I watched her boys when she and Al flew there for several days to decide whether they wanted to move there. With roots firmly planted, Toby and Al decided to stay in Tillson.
I moved away in the 80s, but we stayed in touch all these years. Toby visited me in California several years ago. After Toby was diagnosed with this terrible disease, I called nearly weekly. She called me her West Coast Cheerleader.
Last Saturday night I saw Toby again…she came to me in my dream. We were outside and I was pushing her in her wheelchair. It was a beautiful day, full of October colors and a bright blue sky. I wheeled Toby back to her room, full of her life’s memories. I turned away for a moment to look at something she pointed to and when I returned my gaze to the wheelchair, she was gone; I found her walking across the room. She turned to me and I saw the young Toby I met in Tillson nearly 50 years ago. She waved from across the room and smiled.
I love you.