Elizabeth Summers Cary, 92, of Germantown and North Chatham, Mass., a teacher and longtime Quaker, died Thursday, Nov. 12, of congestive heart failure at Wesley Enhanced Living at Stapeley.
Known as "Betty," Mrs. Cary was born in Needham, Mass., the eldest child of Colin and Dorothy Wilson Summers. She attended grade school in Needham and Columbia High School in Maplewood, N.J., and spent summers at the family home in North Chatham.
As a young adult, Mrs. Cary joined the Religious Society of Friends. After graduating from Wellesley College in 1945, she moved to Philadelphia to teach at Germantown Friends School.
She worked at the school from 1945 until 2011, and continued to volunteer through the 2014 school year.
Mrs. Cary taught third grade until she married and then worked as the "permanent substitute" in the lower school - as office assistant, archivist, volunteer horticulturist, and chaperone on field trips.
Generations of students remembered Mrs. Cary as the school's Halloween parade queen, and as its fire-drill marshal. She conducted drills while fiercely clanging an old-fashioned cowbell.
"All reminisced about being taught good manners in the lunchroom and to 'skip, not run' across campus," said Christy Reardon, head of Lower School.
In the fall of 1945, Mrs. Cary met Stephen Grellet Cary at Germantown Meeting. Family lore has it that he jumped a meetinghouse bench in his eagerness to greet her. He denied it. She insisted it was true.
They were married on New Year's Day 1948, after he returned from relief work in Europe with the American Friends Service Committee.
The two lived in Philadelphia and spent their summers in North Chatham, where Mrs. Cary ran the sailing school for Chatham Yacht Club for many years and served as commodore in 1984 and 1985.
Their three children grew up in the Germantown Meeting and attended Germantown Friends School.
In 1977, when her husband was named acting president of Haverford College, the two moved to Haverford. By that time, they were empty nesters, and the pair thrived on the hustle and bustle of the college campus.
For the next 30 years, they entertained students - and sports teams - serving steak to any team that could beat archrival Swarthmore College.
Mrs. Cary returned to Germantown in 2011 so she could catch a ride on the school bus to Germantown Friends, her family said.
Her husband died in 2002.
She is survived by daughters Anne C. Sampson and Dorothy; a son, Charles R. II; seven grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; two sisters; and nieces and nephews.
A memorial service is to be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19, at Germantown Friends Meeting, 47 W. Coulter St., Philadelphia 19144.
Donations may be made to the meeting at the address above.