Luwander Ellison

| 30 Jan 2024 | 10:20

Luwander Marie Ellison of Hamburg passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her loved ones on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2024. She was 74.

Born in McDowell, W.Va., to the late Alfred and Lillie Mae (Paterson) Cox, Luwander moved to Franklin and later Ogdensburg before settling in Hamburg 39 years ago.

She attended Park Central High School in Bluefield, W.Va.

Luwander moved to New Jersey because her husband had an employment opportunity to work for the New Jersey Zinc Co.

She was employed at several different companies, where her attention to detail and desire to succeed made her a valued employee. During her tenure at the Playboy Club in Vernon, she was quickly promoted to the role of housekeeping supervisor.

It was during that time that she was offered a position at Eddie’s Salon, in the Playboy Club, after obtaining her cosmetology license. It was the perfect next step for Luwander as she had been doing hair for many years with four daughters and she had a passion for making people look and feel their best. Luwander seized the opportunity and obtained her license from the Wilford Academy Beauty School. She was later invited back to teach at the academy.

Luwander was also a licensed barber and held an advanced degree in beauty culture from Dudley’s Cosmetology University in North Carolina.

After the Playboy Club and its later ownerships closed, Luwander continued her career at Tapestry Hair Cutters in Vernon, working until she became too ill to continue. She loved to “play with her dolls,” as she often referred to the hundreds of clients that she made beautiful.

Active in her community, Luwander was a member of the Wallkill Valley Women’s Club and the Sussex County Hairdressers’ Association, and she cut hair at the Sunrise House and Willow Glen.

She also taught a crocheting course at the Neighborhood House in Franklin. She volunteered her services at the Karen Ann Quinlan “Holiday Elegance” fashion show and made the models runway-ready.

Luwander was a world traveler, who visited many different countries over the years, her favorite being Israel.

Predeceased by her parents and her son-in-law, Antonio Johnson, Luwander is survived by her devoted husband of 56 years, William H. Ellison; her children, Jasmine Cox-Ned and her husband Eric, Lee Ellison and her partner Donald Palumbo, Lena Lorine Ellison Lattimore-Miller and her husband Renardo, and Lillie Johnson and her partner Mike Nelson; her grandchildren, Piccola and her husband Neiman, Nyreé, Ellison, Maxwell, Devon and his wife Shelby, Ashli, Christina, Serena and Quincy; as well as her four great-grandchildren, Antonio, Khalarie, Sage and Devon Jr.

Visitation for Luwander will be held on Sunday, Feb. 4 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Ferguson-Vernon Funeral Home, 241 Route 94, Vernon (One Vanderhoof Court for GPS). A funeral will follow at 1 p.m. at the funeral home and a repass will follow at the McAfee Fire Department Hall. All are invited to share in her celebration of life. Interment at the Columbarium at Newton Cemetery will follow on a later date.

Memorial donations may be made to the Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice Foundation, 99 Sparta Ave., Newton, NJ 07860.

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