Salem — Flora Sylva (Corra) Crowder, 95, passed away peacefully at home on Saturday June 8. She was the wife of the late Robert G. Crowder, formerly of Albany N.Y.
Flora was born in New York City, the daughter of Julius and Ida Corra, immigrants from Venice, Italy. She spent summers on a farm near Swartswood Lake, N.J. Her father was a civil engineer and her mother a talented seamstress. Flora attended New York City public schools. She aspired to be a teacher, but the Great Depression intervened, and instead worked as a secretary at an international trade business.
Flora and Bob lived in Albany, N.Y., at first, then New York City. After World War II, Flora and Bob lived and raised their children in Mineola, N.Y. Once the children were grown, she found her dream job in the town library as an assistant in the children’s department. She so enjoyed her reading groups with the preschoolers or helping youngsters with their homework.
Flora had an insatiable curiosity to learn. She was an avid reader, continuing to acquire knowledge until the last few weeks of her life. She loved to travel and saw much of Europe, Asia and America. Flora was a great lover of nature and took much joy in being near the sea. Flora also loved birds and other creatures, and often expressed great insights into the workings and adventures of the natural world. She supported local and national land conservancy organizations and was a member of the Sierra Club. Flora was also a great cook, a talented gardener, and a skilled craftsperson who presented many beautiful quilts and afghans to her beloved children and grandchildren.
Shortly after retirement, Flora and Bob moved to Magnolia, Mass. Flora was a parishioner of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Gloucester, and a member of the Gloucester Women’s Club. She volunteered in the Fuller School library and brought much joy to many children via her storytelling abilities. Twelve years ago, Flora came to live with her daughter in Salem.