Olivia Summers Dutcher

Olivia Summers Dutcher, long-time resident of Fair Haven, NJ, died peacefully in her sleep Wednesday morning in her Seabrook Village apartment. She was 94.

Born and raised in Abingdon , Virginia , she was the daughter of Lewis Preston Summers and Katherine Barbee Summers.  She attended George Washington University where she received a degree in social work and was a member of the Pi Beta Phi Sorority.  She was employed as a social worker during the Depression in the Appalachian mountain region surrounding Abingdon.

Olivia married Howard Jackson Dutcher Jr. of Norfolk, Va. in 1942, and they moved to Red Bank while he was stationed at Fort Monmouth during World War II.  They made their home in Fair Haven in 1946, and, after Howard's death in 1958, Olivia began a successful career in real estate which she continued for nearly 40 years.  She moved to Seabrook Village in 1998.  Olivia is survived by her two children and their families - Derek Preston Dutcher and his wife Jean, of Swainton, New Jersey, and Susan Dutcher Forte and her husband Rocco, of Hadlyme, Connecticut, and her grandchildren James, Cate and Susannah Forte, as well as her many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her brothers John Grant Summers, Lewis Preston Summers, and Andrew Rowan Summers and her sisters Gay Summers Jessup, Katherine Summers Calvert, and Douglas Summers Brown.

Olivia was actively involved with the Family and Children's Service for over 60 years, having been a founding member of its Navarumsunk Auxiliary.  She was a long-time member of the Tower Hill Presbyterian Church of Red Bank, where she had served as a deaconess.  She always maintained strong ties to her native Southwest Virginia .

An avid reader, Olivia was a student of trees, plants, birds and animals, and people.  Well-known as a fascinating conversationalist with an admirable memory for details, she enjoyed recounting stories of the people and places close to her heart. She will be missed by her many friends throughout the area. 

There will be a memorial service for Seabrook residents and staff on Saturday, March 28 at 2PM in the Town Square Atrium.  There will be a memorial service in the chapel at Tower Hill Presbyterian Church, Red Bank, NJ, on Saturday, May 16, 2009 at 12 noon.   Donations in her honor may be made to the Family and Children's Service, 191 Bath Avenue , Long Branch , NJ   07740 .  The Thompson Memorial Home, Red Bank was entrusted with the arrangements.
Bruce S. Thompson, Owner & Manager, NJ LIC #3740