Alice DeKlyn Sperry, 93, passed away on November 20, 2019 at home with family by her side.
Alice was born on July 29, 1926 in Miami, Florida to the late Charles Coulter DeKlyn and Marjorie Platt DeKlyn. She was evacuated from Miami by boat in the Great Miami Hurricane of September 1926. Her family’s business was destroyed, so they relocated to Moorestown, New Jersey, returning to Miami several times in the next 10 years as her father searched for employment during the great depression.
Alice always felt fortunate to have attended the Moorestown Friends School. She excelled in sports, leading her school’s women’s field hockey team to several consecutive undefeated seasons. Alice was also an accomplished basketball player, tennis player, golfer and skier. She transferred her love of outdoor sports to all in her family and succeeded in improving her golf game in her late 80’s.
Since early in life, Alice excelled as an artist. In 1944, she matriculated at Mount Holyoke College and graduated in 1948 with a degree in Art History. She moved to New York City and worked at the New York Public Library and as a schoolteacher at Packer Collegiate Institute. She continued her art study, specializing in Ceramic Sculpture, at New York’s Cooper Union, Art Students League, Sculpture Center, and Greenwich House Pottery, as well as the Rhode Island School of Design and the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Detroit, Michigan. In 1956 and 1958 she was a prize winner at the Ceramic National show in Syracuse, New York and received an award for ceramic sculpture at the Smithsonian Institute’s Seventh International Exhibition. Her work was exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Crafts, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Detroit Institute of Art, and many other museums and galleries. Throughout her life Alice continued to create wonderful ceramic sculpture, paintings, and graphic art for her family, friends, and many organizations. An active member of the New Hampton Garden Club, the Laconia Drawing Club, and Watercolor Group, she maintained a beautiful garden, terrific flowering house plants, and painted dazzling watercolors.
In 1953, she began her 65-year marriage to Elmer Sperry and her focus became children and family. Alice lived for many years in Pompton Plains, NJ, where she raised her family. Twenty-nine years ago, she moved to Meredith, New Hampshire. Extremely devoted to her 4 children and 7 grandchildren, she said her greatest joy in life has been her family and she succeeded in her goal of participating in her grandchildren’s development into young adults.
Alice is survived by her four children and their spouses: Elmer IV and his wife Monica Edgerton-Sperry, Lucy and her husband Nabil N. El-Hage, Edward and his wife Kim Sperry, and Helen Sperry and her husband Maurizio Zineddu. She is also survived by seven grandchildren: Nelson Elhage, Beatrice Helen Nadine El-Hage, Justin Sperry, Taylor Sperry and his wife Kathleen Rosse Sperry, Clelia Zineddu and her husband Patrick Bergamo, Lidia Zineddu, and Stefano Zineddu. She will be greatly missed by all.
A private family gathering was held Thursday, November 21, 2019 in remembrance and to celebrate her life.