Cover photo for Cecelia Marie Bolen's Obituary
Cecelia Marie Bolen Profile Photo
1939 Cecelia marie 2022

Cecelia Marie Bolen

May 24, 1939 — December 25, 2022

Cecelia Marie Bolen, 83, of West Newton, passed away peacefully on Christmas Morning surrounded by her loving family. She was born May 24, 1939 in Masontown and was the daughter of the late John and Erma (Bodnar) Dubroka. She was the wife of the late James Franklin Bolen who passed away May 19, 2009. Cecelia - known as “Cil,” or “Bubs” to family and close friends - was an incredibly strong, talented woman and a natural “people person” with a contagious smile and energy that touched the lives of so many. Raised in “Sandybottom” by her own “Bubba,” Cil was a kind, bubbly girl. She was a majorette and graduated from Masontown High School in 1957. While working alongside her future sister-in-law Mary Ellen at the Dairy Queen that same summer, Cil met Jim when he ordered a banana split and described the encounter as “love at first sight.” Unbeknownst to her that Jim was Mary Ellen’s brother, Cil proclaimed, “see that man at the window, I’m going to marry him one day”! She and Jim went on to celebrate more than 50 years of marriage, raised four spirited girls, helped raise several grandchildren, and enjoyed the deep love, support, and respect of family and many dear friends. For nearly 20 years she supported Jim and the family business-Bolen’s Auto Service-located first in Masontown and then in Carmichaels. For fifteen years she was a successful sales representative with Tupperware, often recognized locally and nationally. Over the years she also worked in various capacities with Americo Construction Co. and its associated development companies, including sales of Dish Network in the early 2000s. In the mid-2000s, Cil shared her warm smile and helpful nature with thousands of people while working as a welcome greeter at the Walmart Supercenter in Uniontown. Throughout her life Cil was an avid volunteer, from serving as a longtime Girl Scout Troop Leader in Masontown to filling boxes for Meals-on-Wheels in recent years. She also devoted much time to honoring service men and women, hosting an annual Veteran’s Day celebration at Filbern Manor and regularly fundraising for the West Newton Fire Department. Cil enjoyed surrounding herself with others, having an open door, and being the “hostess with the mostest.” Her house was known for being filled with guests, the weekend sleepover spot for the kids, the most decorated and flower-filled, the go-to Christmas Eve gathering for family and close friends, and much more. Following Jim’s passing in May 2009, her beloved home has been at Filbern Manor, an apartment building with mostly elderly residents who described Cil as the heart of the building. She was an active resident of Filbern Manor-serving as the Tenant Council President; organizing many events, including an annual celebration for folks over 90 years old and the weekly bingo; decorating for all holidays; and planting flowers all over the grounds. She loved her time at Filbern Manor and the friends she made there. When she was not around others you would find Cil blasting the “easy listening” music station while building a 1,000-piece-puzzle, filling in a crossword, or playing solitaire and freecell. In recent years you would find her finishing a book almost every other week. She had an intellect and mind beyond her years of formal education-a human encyclopedia, naturalist, and tour guide who knew it all-well before the internet and GPS. She loved the outdoors, including walking trails and camping trips with the Girl Scouts. She also traveled all over the U.S., frequently sharing stories from the year her and Jim spent driving across the country and visiting dozens of national parks and monuments. Flowers, the colors purple and yellow, sunshine (another nickname of hers), and butterflies were among her favorite things. The last year of her life was challenging in many respects, but she was a “tough cookie” and still enjoyed things “her way”—from hosting her highly anticipated birthday party, to watching her grandkids swim at her son-in-laws and her great grandson’s first football game, to playing fetch with her great grandpuppy and many rounds of her favorite game, Skip-Bo, with her granddaughter, to watching countless Hallmark movies with her eldest daughter, among so many other joyful activities with family and friends. Her family is forever grateful to those who went above and beyond to support her and enrich her life until its final days. Special thanks to Bob and Janice Reece, Mayor Mary Popovich, Louise Popko, Dr. Jason Bierenbaum, and Steve Jackson, as well as the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center and Family Hospice. Days before her passing Cil remarked to many that she lived 83 great years, had fulfilled her life wishes on Earth and was ready to be reunited with her family in Heaven. She is survived by her daughters, Cecelia Duncan and her husband Mark of New Salem, Lisa Arellano and her husband Peter of Eugene, OR., Maria Bolen of Kansas; son-in-law, Byron White of Elizabeth Township; granddaughter, Brittany Bolen and her husband David Dimock; grandsons, James Paris, Sean Paris and his wife Joanna, Nolan Kroeker, Allan Huggins and his wife Samantha, Nader Elaskary, and Tyler James White; step-grandson, Brandon Duncan and his wife Nicole; great-grandchildren, Jude, Vivian, Frank and Sienna Paris, Atlas Kroeker, Jackson and Christian Huggins, and Tavish and Emjay Duncan; sisters in law, Mary Ellen Booth and her husband John, and Carol Bolen; nieces, Michelle Ataman, Terry Mangus, and Missy Bolen; and nephew, Cary Shawn Ataman. She was preceded in death by her daughter, Christina Bolen White; grandchildren, Cameron Kroeker and Breonna Nicole White; brother-in-law, Roger Bolen; and several aunts, uncles and cousins. Friends are welcome to join the family to honor Cecelia’s life on Friday, December 30, 2022 from 3-4 pm at the Gilbert Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 6028 Smithfield Street, Boston, Elizabeth Township, followed by a Funeral Service at 4 pm in the chapel. (412) 751-5000 Drew J. Gilbert, director, and Deacon Dale DiSanto will officiate. Private inurnment will be at the Round Hill Cemetery, Elizabeth. Donations may be made to the West Newton Fire Department. Condolences may be made at Gilbertfuneralhomeandcrematory.com
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, December 30, 2022

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Gilbert Funeral Home & Crematory

6028 Smithfield St, Boston, PA 15135

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Funeral Service

Friday, December 30, 2022

Starts at 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Gilbert Funeral Home & Crematory

6028 Smithfield St, Boston, PA 15135

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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