With great sadness, BronxWorks shares that our beloved staff member, Rene Ealey, passed away. Rene, a longtime custodian at the Carolyn McLaughlin Community Center, had many close friends across the organization and greater BronxWorks community.
Rene frequently went above and beyond her job title, greeting people at reception, working with summer interns, and even taking part in youth events. Rene would often help direct people at the pantry and, most recently, our weekend family program. If you spent just a few minutes with Rene, her personality, quick wit, and unique sense of humor would shine through. Her laugh was contagious, even during the most stressful times of the day, and always maintained her friendly professionalism. Rene always provided service with a smile, and many staff saw her as the glue keeping operations at the community center together.
We send our deepest condolences to her husband and our BronxWorks colleague, Robert, as well as her family, friends, and all our staff who are still devastated by this loss. BronxWorks will strive to honor her legacy.
We asked staff to share some memories of Rene:
John Weed, Assistant Executive Director: Rene was a very dedicated and caring worker. She worked many years in the early slot at CMCC, opening the building in the mornings. Rene was one of the most reliable staff I knew and could be counted on to always give a helping hand where needed. Rene was personable and pleasant with both staff and clients alike. One year, while receiving one of her Years of Service awards, I had the pleasure of standing for pictures with her and she looked so proud to be a BronxWorks employee. Rene will surely be missed by all of us at BronxWorks.
Julie Spitzer, Department Director, Homelessness Prevention and Access To Benefits: My fondest memory of Renee is how helpful and youthful she was. I remember I used to carry things in to the office from my car, and she would see me struggling and she would snatch it from me and say, “Give it to me before you hurt yourself.” I would say “Rene, you are making me look bad,” and we would both laugh. She would then carry it in with ease.
Kenneth Marshall, Facilities Manager: Rene was a very dedicated employee. She was one person I could rely on who knew the ins and outs of the building. Rene never said no whenever I made a request. Her positive attitude and hard work are what made her great. Rene is sorely missed; we will keep her memory alive.
Daisy Pinero, Food Service Coordinator: My memory of Rene is our early talks in the morning. I would sit in the front desk with her after I start the meals. I would love to bother her about her socks & she would jab at me too. I would kick her out the kitchen, she would say, “I’m leaving, you going to need me!” If I would try to hug her she would run away, yelling at me, laughing. I’m really going to miss her…heartbroken.