Johanna Blom passed away peacefully on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, at the age of 82, in Basking Ridge, NJ. Born on October 12, 1941, in Brooklyn, NY, to Charles and Johanna (Hagg) Abramsen. She was affectionately known as ‘Baby Girl’ to her family because her parents didn’t name her until they were required by the state. As a more mature teenager, her family nickname was shortened to ‘Babe’.
Her father passed away when she was very young. She was raised by her single mother in Brooklyn, and graduated as valedictorian from Bay Ridge High School. She inherited creativity from her father, and a mathematical mind from her mother. During her childhood, she gained a lifelong love for cooking, baking, sewing, fiber arts, and painting. She thrived on using her creative skills in any way she could, even meticulously upholstering and refinishing furniture with precision.
Babe met her beloved husband, Bobby Blom, at the beach. Their love story began with a memorable first date to see the Disney movie Bambi, where Bobby’s laughter echoed louder than all the children in attendance. A fond memory they cherished throughout their years together. She and Bobby eloped just prior to her sister Joan’s wedding, and they kept it a secret for six months while he was away in the Navy.
Their journey together took them from Brooklyn NY, to residing in East Brunswick NJ, Long Valley NJ (for 35+ years), Newbury NH and Holden MA, before recently moving back to NJ. Together they loved to go camping, skiing, swimming, and vacationing at the Jersey shore and Disney World with their grandchildren.
She loved making Christmas special for her family, and keeping the family’s Norwegian and Danish traditions alive. Whether it was for her children or grandchildren, as an amazing seamstress, she spent many hours crafting beautiful Christmas outfits, sweaters, blankets, dolls, and stuffed animals. She labored over preparing the perfect Christmas dinners, and an abundance of delicious cookies. All of which are cherished memories.
Bobby was so impressed by Babe’s sewing skills, he tricked her into making one of her Raggedy Ann and Andy doll sets, and secretly sent it to the White House. First Lady Betty Ford wrote her a thank you letter, and indicated that the dolls were added to their collection in the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in Grand Rapids, MI.
Professionally, Johanna had a distinguished career. She worked for many years while her daughters were younger as a Legal secretary. Once they were older, she used her mathematical skills working for AT&T as a Financial Analyst in Bridgewater, NJ, retiring in 1998. Afterwards, she worked part-time as an Office Manager for a dental office in Chester, NJ.
Babe’s life was a beautiful tapestry of love, creativity, and dedication. She touched the hearts of all who knew her, leaving behind a legacy of warmth, creativity, and family devotion. Her spirit will forever be cherished and remembered.
Johanna is predeceased by her husband of 62 years, Robert (Bobby) Blom, in 2023; her eldest grandson Zachary G. Schmitt in 2020; and her sisters, Joan Syre in 2012 and Carol Anne Perullo in 2022.
She is survived by two loving daughters Alicia Blom Schmitt and her husband Thomas and Elizabeth Dolak Blom and her husband Joseph; and five grandchildren - Thomas, Alexander, Hanna, Nicholas, and Emily. She is also survived by her sister-in-law Helen Wright and brother-in-law Richard Wright, her sister-in-law Anne Blom, her cousins Mark Finck, John Abrams, and Steven Abrams, cousin-in-law Yvonne Dunham, and by many nieces, nephews, and extended family members.
A visitation will be held on Saturday, February 10, 2024, from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM, followed by a funeral service at 12:30 PM at the funeral home. Cremation will be private.