Obituary: Irene V. Friedman

Obituary: Irene V. Friedman

Irene Friedman. Photo courtesy Pamela Friedman

Prepared by Pamela Friedman

It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Irene Veronica Friedman. Irene passed peacefully in Palm Harbor, Florida on March 5, with her children and grandchildren by her side. 

Irene was predeceased by her husband of 58 years, Ernest L. Friedman. She is survived by her children; daughters Pamela Friedman Horner and Deborah Irving; sons David Friedman and Gregory Friedman; daughter-in-law Virginia Friedman, as well as her grandchildren: Taylor, Thomas, Ashley, Brianna, Cameron, Aaliyah, Cassandra and Gregory. Irene is also survived by her brother, Robert Hilliard, as well as many nieces and nephews.   

Born in Port Jefferson on January 24, 1936, to loving parents Anne and Frederick Hilliard and one of four children, she grew up in East Setauket. Irene graduated from Port Jefferson High School. She also graduated from the City University of New York in Manhattan, earning a teaching degree in Cosmetology, and continued her education, graduating from Valley College of Los Angeles, CA. 

She worked as a stylist with a celebrity clientele before marrying her husband Ernie in 1959. They moved back to her hometown, where she raised four children, and was an integral part of the family retail business. Later in life after moving to Florida, and her children were grown, she received her Real Estate License. 

Then at 55 years old, she went back to school to earn a bachelor’s in nursing from St. Petersburg Junior College and became a practicing Registered Nurse for Hospice of Florida Suncoast. It was perhaps, other than her children, her proudest accomplishment. She was dedicated to caring for terminally ill patients with the kindness, patience and empathetic care that came so naturally to her.  

Irene will be remembered for her dignity, courage, strength, generosity, devotion to her family, and unwavering faith. Her grace, warmth, playful spirit, endless love, and kindness will be deeply missed. She will be forever in our hearts. 

Services will be held at Serenity Funeral Home and Memorial Gardens in Largo, FL on April 6. A Celebration of Life will be held in the summer in Setauket. 

In lieu of flowers, charitable donations in memory of Irene Friedman may be made to Suncoast Hospice Foundation/Empath Health or St. Matthew Church in Largo, FL.