Former Port Jeff resident loses cancer battle

Former Port Jeff resident loses cancer battle

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Elisabeth Kaalund Russell died peacefully on March 31, 2021, in her home on Merritt Island, Florida. She succumbed to cancer after a hard-fought battle. 

A loving mother and grandmother, she lived a full life and will be greatly missed.

Photo from Tina Myers

Born in 1941 in Copenhagen, Denmark, Elisabeth shared many memories growing-up as the youngest of five siblings in a country recovering from a world war. 

As a young woman she decided to immigrate to New York as an Au Pair. Soon after, she met her first husband, Charles Helenius. They eventually settled down in Baldwin and had two children, Peter and Tina.

Many years later, including a couple of years living in Copenhagen, she moved to Port Jefferson with her children. 

She had a second daughter, Ingrid, and in 1987 found her favorite home on Puritan Path.

As a young mother, Elisabeth went to college to become a registered nurse. She started her career at Hillcrest Hospital in Queens in the labor and delivery department. 

Over the years she worked at Frederiksberg Hospital in Copenhagen, Brookhaven Hospital in Patchogue, North Shore Hospital in Manhasset, Stony Brook Hospital and then ended her career at Mather Hospital in Port Jefferson. 

Liz met Dr. Frank Russell in the operating room, and they became lifetime companions outside of the hospital. 

One of her proudest moments was being the attending nurse in the first surgery performed at Stony Brook Hospital.

After a few years of retirement in Vermont, Elisabeth found her “paradise” in Florida. She loved the warmth and sun there. 

As usual, she found a local Danish group to socialize with and maintain Danish traditions. 

Liz enjoyed working in her yard and swimming in her pool during the day and knitting at night.

Her joyous spirit and endless energy will continue to inspire everyone she knew and loved. 

She will be remembered when her loved ones are reading, painting, knitting, cleaning and entertaining.

Liz always set a beautiful table and made everyone feel special. She is survived by her son and daughter in-law, Peter Helenius and Margaret Luckey of Mastic Beach, daughter and son-in-law, Tina and David Myers, of  Beaverton, Oregon; daughter and son-in-law; Ingrid and Larry Pike, of East Middlebury, Vermont. 

She is also survived by her brother and sister in-law, Karl and Lis Kaalund; brother and sister in-law Per and Marianne Kaalund; sister and brother in-law Inger and Gordon Campbell. 

In addition, Elisabeth has seven grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews in the United States, Canada, Denmark and Australia.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to the American Diabetes Association

Obituary from Tina Myers