Gene and Sue Shreve, who died 10 days apart, were...

Gene and Sue Shreve, who died 10 days apart, were active in their Bay Shore community. Credit: Shreve family

Gene and Sue Shreve would have celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary this November. Active in their Bay Shore community, accomplished in their professions, and genealogy experts tracing their roots to the American Revolution and his to Charlemagne, both died of natural causes within 10 days of each other — Gene on Jan. 27 at age 96, Sue on Feb. 6 at age 92.

“Dad’s service was on a Saturday, my husband and I came home on Sunday, I saw [my mother] on Monday and she passed around 4 a.m. Tuesday morning,” said Cynthia Shreve Richard, 64, of West Orange, New Jersey, the younger of the couple’s two daughters.

Gene Shreve, a World War II veteran, died at home in Bay Shore. Sue Shreve died at the Winchester Gardens nursing home in Maplewood, New Jersey.

“Their connection as life partners always struck me, just the ways in which they looked out for each other,” said a friend of the couple, Jennifer Carpenter Low, 52, of Bay Shore.

“Even down to little things like grocery shopping and Sue being adamant about it being only sugar-free brownies that Gene could eat, because he couldn't eat brownies with sugar as an ingredient,” said Carpenter Low, vice president of marketing and communications for United Way of Long Island.

“In every aspect of their partnership and their marriage,” she added, “they were connected.”

Richard described her mother and father as “very involved parents.”

“I remember sailing with my dad as a kid. He built sailboats, and we were always at the Sayville Yacht Club and he was out there racing boats,” she said. “Most of my childhood, every weekend we were at Fire Island on a boat.”

The couple's other daughter, Pamela Shreve, 65, of Bay Shore, said her favorite memory of their father was attending Operation Sail with him in 1976 in celebration of America’s bicentennial.

Eugene Sheldon Shreve Jr. was born in Manhattan on June 4, 1927, to Rosaria Piscitelli Shreve Litt and Eugene Sheldon Shreve, and raised in Queens. He attended The Pennington School in Pennington, New Jersey, and later took a hiatus from the now-closed Jamaica High School to enlist in the U.S. Navy in May 1945. He served stateside before being honorably discharged the following year as a seaman second class. He returned to high school, graduating in 1947.

Shreve obtained a forestry degree from The Ranger School at what is now the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse and later a business administration degree from Hofstra University. He went on to work as a field representative for Grumman Aerospace, now Northrop Grumman, and later for the IRS in Holtsville. He and his wife and daughters lived in East Islip for 25 years until they moved to Bay Shore in 1981.

Sue Ann Gardner Shreve was born in Brooklyn on Jan. 26, 1932, to Homer Frank Gardner and Grace Kohlhagen Gardner. Raised in Queens and later on Long Island, she graduated from Sewanhaka High School in Floral Park. After attending Ohio Wesleyan University, she transferred to Hofstra and earned a degree in business management and marketing. She worked for New York Telephone, now Verizon, for Republic Aviation in Farmingdale, as a substitute teacher in East Islip and as manager of a surgical supply company before retiring in 1981.

In retirement, the couple took up genealogy. Sue Shreve held executive positions with the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War. 

Gene Shreve, whose lineage to Charlemagne, first emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, enabled his membership in the Colonial Order of the Crown, additionally belonged to the Plantagenet Society, the Sons of the American Revolution, the New York Masons and the Bay Shore Historical Society.

In addition to their daughters, Gene and Sue Shreve are survived by two grandchildren; and Gene's younger sisters Anita Foote, of Hudson, Ohio, and Madge Newell, of Tulsa, Oklahoma.

A memorial for Gene Shreve was held Feb. 3. Sue Shreve’s funeral is scheduled for March 9 at the Fredrick J. Chapey & Sons Funeral Home in West Islip. The cremated couple will be interred at Pinelawn Memorial Park and Arboretum in Pinelawn. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Gene and Sue Shreve would have celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary this November. Active in their Bay Shore community, accomplished in their professions, and genealogy experts tracing their roots to the American Revolution and his to Charlemagne, both died of natural causes within 10 days of each other — Gene on Jan. 27 at age 96, Sue on Feb. 6 at age 92.

“Dad’s service was on a Saturday, my husband and I came home on Sunday, I saw [my mother] on Monday and she passed around 4 a.m. Tuesday morning,” said Cynthia Shreve Richard, 64, of West Orange, New Jersey, the younger of the couple’s two daughters.

Gene Shreve, a World War II veteran, died at home in Bay Shore. Sue Shreve died at the Winchester Gardens nursing home in Maplewood, New Jersey.

“Their connection as life partners always struck me, just the ways in which they looked out for each other,” said a friend of the couple, Jennifer Carpenter Low, 52, of Bay Shore.

“Even down to little things like grocery shopping and Sue being adamant about it being only sugar-free brownies that Gene could eat, because he couldn't eat brownies with sugar as an ingredient,” said Carpenter Low, vice president of marketing and communications for United Way of Long Island.

“In every aspect of their partnership and their marriage,” she added, “they were connected.”

Richard described her mother and father as “very involved parents.”

“I remember sailing with my dad as a kid. He built sailboats, and we were always at the Sayville Yacht Club and he was out there racing boats,” she said. “Most of my childhood, every weekend we were at Fire Island on a boat.”

The couple's other daughter, Pamela Shreve, 65, of Bay Shore, said her favorite memory of their father was attending Operation Sail with him in 1976 in celebration of America’s bicentennial.

Eugene Sheldon Shreve Jr. was born in Manhattan on June 4, 1927, to Rosaria Piscitelli Shreve Litt and Eugene Sheldon Shreve, and raised in Queens. He attended The Pennington School in Pennington, New Jersey, and later took a hiatus from the now-closed Jamaica High School to enlist in the U.S. Navy in May 1945. He served stateside before being honorably discharged the following year as a seaman second class. He returned to high school, graduating in 1947.

Shreve obtained a forestry degree from The Ranger School at what is now the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse and later a business administration degree from Hofstra University. He went on to work as a field representative for Grumman Aerospace, now Northrop Grumman, and later for the IRS in Holtsville. He and his wife and daughters lived in East Islip for 25 years until they moved to Bay Shore in 1981.

Sue Ann Gardner Shreve was born in Brooklyn on Jan. 26, 1932, to Homer Frank Gardner and Grace Kohlhagen Gardner. Raised in Queens and later on Long Island, she graduated from Sewanhaka High School in Floral Park. After attending Ohio Wesleyan University, she transferred to Hofstra and earned a degree in business management and marketing. She worked for New York Telephone, now Verizon, for Republic Aviation in Farmingdale, as a substitute teacher in East Islip and as manager of a surgical supply company before retiring in 1981.

In retirement, the couple took up genealogy. Sue Shreve held executive positions with the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War. 

Gene Shreve, whose lineage to Charlemagne, first emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, enabled his membership in the Colonial Order of the Crown, additionally belonged to the Plantagenet Society, the Sons of the American Revolution, the New York Masons and the Bay Shore Historical Society.

In addition to their daughters, Gene and Sue Shreve are survived by two grandchildren; and Gene's younger sisters Anita Foote, of Hudson, Ohio, and Madge Newell, of Tulsa, Oklahoma.

A memorial for Gene Shreve was held Feb. 3. Sue Shreve’s funeral is scheduled for March 9 at the Fredrick J. Chapey & Sons Funeral Home in West Islip. The cremated couple will be interred at Pinelawn Memorial Park and Arboretum in Pinelawn. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.

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