Cover photo for Ethel Little's Obituary
Ethel Little Profile Photo

Ethel Little

d. June 8, 2021

Ethel Little, 92, of Hurley, died Tuesday June 8, 2021, peacefully at home surrounded by her loving family, with her cat Kismet on her lap.

Born in Stamford, Connecticut she was the daughter of the late Sven & Carla Gabriella Obërg Sealander.

Ethel is a graduate of Syracuse University. Ethel worked to support herself and her family her entire life. After graduation from college, she performed in Summerstock Theater, she taught dance at Arthur Murry Dance Studios and she worked as a tour guide at NBC Studios. In early years she was the Director of Head Start in Utica, NY, the Director of the Cornhill Opportunity Center in Utica, NY and was active in the civil rights movement in the 1960’s. She later worked for the NY State Department of Labor in Newburgh, NY. Widowed in 1979, she devoted her time to caring for her aging parents while still working full-time.
Ethel enjoyed a long and busy life after retirement. She belonged to a Folk Dance group, a Sign Language study group and local social action committees. She attended local theater, cultural and gardening events with friends. She was a doting grandmother and spent countless hours entertaining her grandsons. She enjoyed knitting, reading and traveling with her family. Ethel was an active member of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Catskills for many years including serving on many committees and as board secretary.
Ethel’s gentle loving sweetness and generous nature was evident in all she did in her life. She put her heart into both humanitarian and environmental causes. More than anything she loved her family and friends.

Ethel is survived by two of her children, a daughter Tracy Little and her husband David Hayes, of Hurley, and a son, Christopher Little and his wife Marie, of Rochester, NY. Ethel is also survived by three grandchildren, Reilly, Schuyler and Kevin.
Ethel is also survived by many nieces and nephews, Peter Little, Karen Canfield, Scot Sealander, Rick Sealander, Sandra Mayo, Neil Sealander, David Sealander, Jenny Sealander and Connie Vanderhoff.

In addition to Ethel’s parents, she is predeceased by her husband Farnham Little who passed away in 1979. Ethel is also predeceased by her daughter Laura Louise Little and her brother Sven Sealander Jr. and his wife Ruth.

Memorial Service will be held on July 10, 2021 in Hurley, NY. Please contact Tracy at for details 2 weeks prior.

Simpson-Hammerl Funeral Home is honored to assist the family of Ethel with the arrangements.

The family requests that memorial donations be made to Arbor Day Foundation – Trees in Memory or to UUCC Catskills

Online condolences maybe left for the family of Ethel by visiting
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ethel Little, please visit our flower store.


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