Elizabeth was born June 13, 1932 in Csakanydorszlo, Hungary. She completed grammar school and entered trade school at the age of 13 to learn to be a seamstress. While her early years were spent in Csakanydorszlo, her parents moved to Budapest to obtain jobs and a place to live. She and her brother joined them later. She was working in a clothing factory, in Budapest, where she met and fell in love with Jeno L. Erdelyi, they were married on June 18, 1955.
They worked hard to acquire a “fixer-upper” home. Jeno was the “general contractor” in charge of renovating the unit #24, back to original condition. This building was historical, and they took great pride in the restoration and making it their first home. Situated in the beautiful “Var” (Castle Hill) area of Budapest, just down the street from the famous Matthias Templom (St. Mattias Church), she revisited this place 20 years after leaving her homeland.
My parents wanted a better life for their future children than living under Communist rule in Hungary, so they made plans to escape to freedom. They did not tell anyone of their plans and during the uprising in 1956, while Budapest was invaded by tanks, they left their beloved home on November 23, 1956. With the deep snow, they watched the military guards and passed the check points. Only her brother, Sandor, knew of their plans and helped them with their plans, knowing that he would also join them as soon as he could. She said goodbye to her parents knowing that she might never see them again. She had only her church clothes and her wedding picture as they fled their Homeland. They crossed into Austria, where her Aunt lived and was waiting for them. They boarded a ship that took 15 days to cross the ocean, they arrived in New York City on February 15, 1957. They came to Monterey California where her husband worked as a tailor in a men’s clothing store in Pebble Beach, while she set up the house hold on a one income budget.
Her first child, Lisa was born February 6, 1958. They moved to Costa Mesa, California in 1959 and then bought their home in Orange in 1960. Her son Jeno, was born July 12, 1964.
In 1969, they became United States citizens with the support and admiration of many friends. There was a celebration in honor of the new Americans at Knotts Berry Farm, with Mr. Walter Knott hosting a tour of Independence Hall for the families. She was so proud of her new home country.
Mom worked alongside Dad, at their tailor shop “Jeno’s Tailors” for more than 12 years. She began working at Nordstrom-Brea, while still working with Dad until he closed the shop. She made many friends at Nordstrom and received many awards of excellent service. There were rallies and events for the employees and Mom was the first to volunteer for any of the skits, songs or productions! She loved being in the limelight! Her joy, laughter and smile was admired by everyone. She retired in 2001 from Nordstrom. After the passing of her husband in 2002, she returned to work part time at Bloomingdales-Fashion Island in 2004. She worked here for a few more years until she decided to relax and enjoy her family.
Her senior years were filled with fun outings with the Red Hat Ladies Club and the Tustin Senior Center, playing Bingo and more recently, Orange Senior Center. She enjoyed short trips with her daughter and family in the motorhome, often saying “I haven’t been here in such a long time. Your father and I used to come here.”
Elizabeth leaves behind, her daughter, Lisa Izing and son-in-law, Simon, her grandchildren, Nandor Izing, his wife Eva, granddaughters, Monika and Eva Izing. Her son, Jeno S. Erdelyi and daughter-in-law Janice.