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“Melora and Julie......I just saw this. I hope you understand how important your mom was to me. Spending the summers with her and Dory was like...Read More »
1 of 10 | Posted by: Robert Bischoff - FL - Family

“Words cannot express my deep sadness to learn of Lillian's passing. I will always treasure her as a friend and a patron. I have no words except...Read More »
2 of 10 | Posted by: Rosemary Connelly - Milford, DE

“Melora, We think of you and your family with very fond memories. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.Mike & Winnie RushRush Uniform Inc. ”
3 of 10 | Posted by: Mike & Winnie Rush - New Castle, DE

“Julie and Melora,We want you to know that your mom's legacy lives on and on.Kevin, Amy, Brian and Chris have delightful memories of the Elementary...Read More »
4 of 10 | Posted by: Kaddy and John Turner - DE

“My deepest condolences to he family and friends of Mrs. Shah. May the God of all comfort give you comfort during this difficult time. ”
5 of 10 | Posted by: Theola Gray

“I offer heartfelt condolences to Lillian's family. Lillian helped to instill in me perseverance, a thirst for broad knowledge, and a curiosity about...Read More »
6 of 10 | Posted by: Brendan Pryor - New Castle, DE

“Julie & Mel,I'm so very sorry. My heart is broken for you. What a devastating loss. I loved Lillian and Atul and hope that they are happily reunited....Read More »
7 of 10 | Posted by: Mary Bright - Louisville, KY

“Please accept my condolences on the death of your dear mother, Lillian, a truly great lady. I met her through the Delaware Press Association and...Read More »
8 of 10 | Posted by: Moira Sheridan - Wilmington, DE

“Our sons David, Richard and Michael all attended Elementary Workshop. They had wonderful years there and we are grateful for all that Lillian and...Read More »
9 of 10 | Posted by: A friend

“DearJulie and Melora and their families, Your mom and grandmom was a wonderful person and I am sure you will miss her. But know that many people...Read More »
10 of 10 | Posted by: Gail Haldeman - Baltimore, MD


Lillian died peacefully in her home on March 18, 2017 at the age of 82.

She was the youngest of nine children born to Everett and June Gullett in Lucasville, Ohio; she was preceded in death by Opal, Zeke, Dorie, Robert, Helen, Aggie, Sherman, and Eldon. Her older siblings were Lillian's first heroes; she deeply admired their selflessness in supporting the family during the Great Depression, and their participation in the WWII war effort. Lillian graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1954 where she participated in every sport, play, or club that was offered; as a junior she was inducted into the National Honor Society. Lillian attended Otterbein College in Ohio and the University of Delaware; over the years and in her unique approach to education, Lillian attained a Masters Degree from Goddard College and then was awarded Bachelors from the University of Delaware. She was the first person in her family to earn a college degree.

In 1963, Lillian met the love of her life Atul, playing table tennis at the Newark YMCA. Though their backgrounds could not have been more disparate, they shared an intellectual curiosity and love of family that knew no bounds. They were true life partners for 50 years and supported each other's endeavors 110%. In 1972, Lillian co-founded the Elementary Workshop at 5th and Pine Streets, with her life-long friend Penny Contractor. For the next 28 years, on a shoestring budget and with a wonderful and dedicated teaching staff, Lillian worked tirelessly to provide a vibrant and nurturing educational environment where all children could reach their highest potential. She embraced the Montessori philosophy of education and was a strong and vocal advocate for all children.

After retirement, Lillian co-authored Keeping Healthy by Keeping Track with her friend Laura Messinger, and lectured for several years. Also, she and Atul took fabulous trips abroad, visited with relatives, and made a beautiful home for themselves. Together they patronized many local artists and counted them among their dearest friends.

Lillian is survived by her daughters Julie and Melora, their husbands Dan McNeil and CP Lucas, and the apples of her eye, her grandsons Dan Kumar and Phillip.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests a donation to a charity who serves children.