Geraldine A. Turner – Bixler, age 89, of Dunedin, Florida passed away in Allentown, Pennsylvania on November 15, 2017.
She was born on April 16, 1928 in Bethlehem Twp., New Jersey. She resided in Florida for the past 17 years, having moving from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She was the daughter of the late Andrew and Helen Huff Hauck. She was predeceased in death by her loving husband, S. Fordham Bixler.
At a time when women in America were only beginning to emerge as Chief Operating Officers, Geraldine was named President in 1975 of Orr’s Department Stores, Inc., which corporation maintained stores in Flemington and Phillipsburg, New Jersey, and in Bethlehem and Easton, Pennsylvania, as well as a specialty store in Chester, New Jersey. She was the first woman to be named president of a retail chain in New Jersey. Geraldine attained this well-deserved achievement the old fashioned way – through hard work. Unpretentious, soft-spoken, and generous, she possessed an innate understanding of the merchandising sciences. She rose through the ranks of the company to which she dedicate her life, beginning her career as a sales clerk in 1947. Her obvious talents and work ethic were quickly recognized, and she advanced from merchandising manager and other positions of responsibility to Chief Executive. During this journey of dedication and service, she went out of her way to treat every Orr’s employee with her unassuming dignity and grace. She knew every employee by name and took a personal interest in their welfare. The employees sensed that they were part of a caring family, and as a result, many employees worked at Orr’s for decades.
Geraldine loved life, both at the beach, the swimming pool, and in the Florida sunshine. She gave thanks to God for her good fortune through her faith as a devout Catholic. She was a member of Our Lady of Lourdes in Dunedin, Florida, and was also a former member of Church of the Annunciation in Bloomsbury, New Jersey.
Survivors include three nephews: William Hauck of Clinton, New Jersey, Bruce Hauck and his wife, Dawn, of Annandale, New Jersey and Jack Hauck and his wife, Evelyn, of Bangor, Pennsylvania; one niece; Teresa Andresen and her husband, Albert, of Milford, New Jersey. She is also survived by many great-nieces and nephews.
Predeceased in addition to her husband are three brothers: Charles Hauck, Andrew Hauck and George Hauck, and two sisters, Esther Jurik and Ruth Hauck.
Services will be private, with arrangements by Scarponi-Bright Funeral Home in Lebanon, New Jersey. Memorials can be made to the Children’s Home of Easton, 2000 S. 25th Street, Easton, PA 18042.