About a month ago, Hunterdon Land Trust shared with you a story about Beverly Railsback, who kindly left a bequest to our nonprofit when she sadly passed away last October. Beverly loved nature, and made a profound gift to protect it by remembering HLT in her estate planning. You can read that story here.

This past weekend, we received a note from Beverly’s sister, Shirley Creek, who lives in Indiana. Shirley wanted to share her memories of her sister, and we were so touched to learn more about Beverly’s gentle spirit that we wanted to share it with you.


Beverly served on various committees and groups with the [Unitarian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing]: Ladies Grace group, poetry group, coordinator of airport transportation, choir, assistant treasurer, worship associate, assisted with meals served to the youth from HomeFront.

She was an excellent baker and provided her treats for many social events including the UUCWC Auction Event. She was well known for her lemon squares, gluten-free macaroon, pies, and various cookies (to name a few!)

Beverly was involved with the Lambertville Indivisible Group, Lambertville Annual Garden Show, she was politically involved in sending out postcards to potential voters during the last presidential election. She was also an avid walker — weather permitting she walked daily. She loved walking along the canal, and there was a special tree she liked to visit. As her health failed, she persisted on, knowing that keeping her strength up was necessary for her to endure the treatments she would undergo.

Beverly grew up on a small family farm in Indiana. The family lived in an old brick farmhouse that is, in part more than a hundred years old. She had secret hiding places in the house where she could “escape” to read and have privacy! She loved swinging on a swing hung from a tree and playing games with her younger siblings. There she learned to love and appreciate the wildlife, flowers, trees, cats and dogs. There was also a pet duck that she adopted and called him Donald Duck, he liked to hang out in the yard, but when he did his business on the kitchen stoop Mother wasn’t very happy!

She was also a nature enthusiast, she was concerned about preservation of the land, loved trees and flowers. She enjoyed feeding the birds and squirrels in her yard, and loved watching Border Collies herding cattle. She was also quite a fisher woman; she spent many hours fishing from a boat or along a bank with a special long-time friend.

Beverly was a fearless traveler, she traveled all over the world by herself, and was always ready for her next adventure.

Beverly fought courageously for five years with ovarian cancer. She was vigilant and brave undergoing various forms of chemotherapy and any other treatment that was offered to her.

Beverly was my only older sister. She was a mother figure to me in many ways, and though we led very different lives, there was an unbreakable bond between us that only sisters understand. As cancer took its toll on her, the roles switched, and I took on a motherly concern for her.

I will never be the same without her, I miss her very much.

Shirley Cheek