LaVina Mae Blum

LaVina Blum (nee Fisher) 89 of Northvale, NJ formerly of Harrington Park, NJ and Johnstown, NY passed away at home on Wednesday, April 19,2023, surrounded by her loving family. It was a beautiful spring day with the lilacs in bloom and the smell of crab apple blossoms in the air.  

LaVina was a loving mother of Steven Blum and wife Ellen, Reneè Binder and husband Matthew, Daniel Blum, Bridgit Carroll and partner John Saunier, and the late Russell Blum and wife Carol. Proud grandmother of Tim (Audrey), Nicolas (Emi), Geoffrey (Leah), Scott (Alexis), Alyssa, Samantha, Ashley (Antonio), Katelyn (Michael), Alexandra, Joshua, Oliver, Jacob, and the late Lesley (Bob). Cherished great-grandmother of Olivia (Luke), Mason, Linkin, Russell, Isabella, Alder, Brielle, and Amari. Dear sister of the late Robert Fisher, Warren Fisher, and Curtis Fisher. Also survived by many nieces, nephews and other loving relatives and friends.  

LaVina (aka The Hat Lady) volunteered with the Harrington Park Ambulance Corp before moving to Northvale where she lived for 41 years. She enjoyed working for different businesses in the area when in 1992 she became the head Milk Lady at Norwood public school where she was recognized for her 25 years of service. During that time, she was also a crossing guard at Charles DeWolf school in Old Tappan. The kids looked forward to seeing what costume she would wear each Halloween. They were never disappointed. 

LaVina was a friend, mom, grandma to anyone in need. While living in HP you could stop by at any given moment and find a crowd raiding her fridge or swimming in her pool. She always had things to do, places to go, people to see and would normally grab a grandkid or 2 for an adventure, especially garage sale-ing. Her love for a sweet treat, a good book, wildflowers (snip snip), and a great game of cards will never compare to the love she showed her family, her church (Trinity Reform), and her community. She will be missed by all and live on in the hearts of those lucky enough to have had the opportunity to be around her. 

The Celebration of Lavina’s life will be held on Saturday, September 23, 2023 from 1-4 PM at the Norwood American Legion Post 272, 480 Broadway, Norwood, NJ and can be viewed through the livestream link below:

Donations to the Closter Nature Center in Lavina’s name would be greatly appreciated. 


  1. Heaven has gained another Angel today
    and my world will never be the same!

    You can’t miss her Lord, she’s the lady in the Big hat
    and has a list of things for you to fix!

    They say as a boy you look up to your father as a hero, but your mom is your best friend. For me this was oh so true and though I outgrew my father being a hero, my mother has always remained my best friend. She also wore so many other hats such as doctor, nurse, teacher, Chef, psychiatrist, confidante, coach, referee, sounding board , disciplinarian, & protector and of course just big ones for all occasions. She was the glue that kept our crazy house and family together! Though we may all have disagreed on everything else, the one thing we all agreed on was mom!

    When we were kids She always made time for each of us separately. Mine was at bath time. It’s the only time she could get my feet and mouth to stop going 100 miles per second, though even then it wasn’t long lasting, but during that time I’d have her read me the poems out of a book she kept in one of her top dresser draws. This must have been where I developed my Love of poetry and it’s never left me. From reading them to writing some of my own. I wonder if my son Oliver may have inherited that as he was very interested in French poetry when he was in high school. My mother said i had inherited it from her maternal grandfather Rev Walter O’Grady for whom it was said everything he wrote on paper was in rhyme even the grocery list!

    Growing up my mother was a bit of a tomboy and how could she not while having three older brothers as she did her being the baby of them family. She was the Captain of her baseball team, basketball team as well as the cheerleaders. Her athletic abilities served her well through her life especially while raising us as she did a pretty good of chasing after us with her wooden paddle in hand ready to have us pay for whatever transgression we had committed. I can remember plenty of times running out of breath as she closed in on me and it did help give me the ability in becoming a pretty fast runner. The one thing I also learnt from her was if you could make her laugh it would get you out of a beating, I mean how could anyone hit a kid while laughing hysterically and this is where I honed my comedic skills. I can recall one time she was chasing me around the house when she said “Daniel, when I catch you I’m gonna beat your rasp!” To which I stopped short, turned around and said to her, “If you can find my rasp you’re more than welcome to beat it!” She tried to stay angry, but couldn’t as she laughed and walked away!!! She got back at me though. There came a point where she gave up on chasing me and found that waiting was much more effective. I’d hide for what seemed like hours and probably was, in the upstairs hall closet and when I thought enough time that had elapsed, she would have forgotten all about wanting to tan my hide and I’d as quietly as a mouse slip outside of the closet and tippy toed to the stairs and as I peeked around the corner to see if the coast was clear, there she sat on the 4th or 5th stair from the top reading a book and right next to it one of the wooden paddles!!
    In all the times I’d have one of those paddles break across my backside, which is why she bought them in bulk, I never once begrudged her for it because I knew I deserved every bit of it and it was always measured out appropriately to fit the crime!

    I always knew today day would eventually come, but of course I always had Hoped it wouldn’t be until well after her 100th birthday, but I also knew even if it were then I’d feel as lost as I do now without her. No more phone calls telling her what’s been going on in life, us discussing politics and what was happening back at her house and of course the weather! It became a habit I had intentionally created that we would always end the call with me telling her a joke. I think it was something she and her brother, my uncle Bud used to do as well. I always loved that part because I knew this day would come and I wanted to always be able to remember the last thing I ever heard from her was her laughing and that I was the cause of that laughter, just as she laughed about beating my rasp.

    Goodbye Mom. I Hope you’re going to a place you’ve always dreamed of and when you’re there, be sure to mention my name to everyone. So let me end this in the same way I used to sign all my cards to her when I was a kid…
    I Love you, your son Daniel Blum

    And with that as was our custom I’d like to leave you with a joke.

    There were two honeybees having a chat. The one honeybee was wearing a yarmulke and the other honeybee asked him why, to which he replied, “because I didn’t want anyone to think I was a WASP!”
    I can hear you laughing mum as the tears run down my face.

  2. Karen HavlicekDwyer

    Loved her dearly. So glad I got to see her Sunday and she had some of moms (Nancy’s) baked beans. Rest in peace Aunt Lavina. I hope you all are having a reunion up there and enjoying yourselves pain free.
    Love all if you!! Rest In Peace

  3. Catherine (Katie) Houser

    Aunt LaVina, I didn’t grow up with my father but I remember he once took me to NJ when I was very young and I got to go to your house and meet and enjoy my cousins. I was very scared as I had never been away from my immediate family. You will always be remembered as the Aunt who showed me love. I am honored to have known you and you will be greatly missed.

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