On July 31, 2021, Olga O’Donnell LaPell (90) passed away peacefully at her home in North
Creek, NY. Her loving family was by her side.
She is survived by her daughter Diane (Rusty) Batchelor; her daughter Donna (Kris) Fuller; her
daughter Cynthia (John Schrade) LaPell; her son Jeffry (Tina Lundgren) LaPell; her son Robert
(Mary Jo Daly) LaPell; her ten grandchildren, sixteen great-grandchildren, and one
great-great-grandchild; and her brother, Douglas (Donna) O’Donnell. Olga was predeceased by
her husband of 52 years, Jim LaPell, their daughter Debbie Foos, as well as her two siblings:
Merton C. O’Donnell and Rita O’Donnell Perry.
Olga was born Olga Mae O’Donnell on July 11, 1931 to Merton O’Donnell and Doris Crowe in
Mineville, NY. In 1948 at the age of sixteen, she graduated valedictorian from Newcomb Central
School and began work at National Lead in Tahawus as a switchboard operator. It was in
Newcomb that she met Jim LaPell, and on February 24, 1950, they married in North Creek, NY.
They would live in Newcomb for ten years before settling in North Creek. Together, they raised
their six children and formed many lasting friendships in both communities.
A wonderful mother, she loved her children fiercely and was proud of each and every one of
their accomplishments. Olga enjoyed being a part of the close-knit Adirondack community as
well. She was a member of the North Creek Methodist Church and a volunteer at the train
station. Among the many jobs she would take on throughout her life, most will remember
meeting her at the bank as a teller and at Johnsburg Central School as the Assistant Librarian.
Compassionate and gracious, she found joy in the presence of others, recounting memories
and moments that anyone else might have forgotten. Her greatest pleasures were family
get-togethers, visiting with friends over a cup of coffee or lunch, and going on long drives with
Jim. To say that Olga was a people person would be an understatement: even her time alone
was spent in the company of authors like Nicholas Sparks and “the man in the box,” the E-book
reader who narrated her favorite dramas and mysteries after she lost her eyesight.
Olga will always be remembered for her kind heart, her beautiful spirit, and of course, by her
many nicknames. Whether you knew her as Grammy O, Ogie, Big O, Grandma, Gram, or Zat,
you know that she cherished her loved ones deeply and was cherished deeply in return.
Friends may call on Olga’s family from 1 to 3 pm, Friday, August 6, 2021 at the Alexander Funeral Home, 3809 Main St., Warrensburg.
A memorial service to celebrate her life will be conducted at a later date at the convenience of her family.
In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may take the form of donations to Johnsburg EMS, 624 Peaceful Valley Rd., North Creek, NY 12853 or the Johnsburg Public Library, 219 Main St., North Creek, NY 12853.
Please visit www.alexanderfh.net for online guest book, condolences, and directions.