Eleanor (Ellie) Donahue Champion of Essex passed away peacefully, surrounded by love from near and far, on February 1, 2022 at age 86. Born on November 5, 1935 in Middlefield CT, Ellie spent her adult life in Essex where she was incredibly active in the community and a true matriarch of her family. She is survived by her loving husband and best friend, Robert (Bob) N. Champion, to whom she was married for over 66 years. Together they owned and ran Champion Mfg. in Deep River for 40 years. Ellie was not only a hard working, self-made entrepreneur, but she was someone who also donated her time and talents to her community. She served on the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Business Industry Association and was a volunteer at Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore, the Essex Library, and the Essex Historical Society. She was a long time member of Black Hall Club golf course and a book club, and she had a large collection of dear friends who were very important to her. Those who knew Ellie will remember her ceaseless energy, her positive outlook, her dedication to causes she cared about, and her enjoyment of good conversation, a good book, and good wine. However, she always made it clear that, above all else, her family was her number one passion. Though she began her life as an only child, her true legacy is her large, close, and loving extended family. She was truly happiest when everyone was together, especially on vacation when she could work on her next craft project surrounded by good food and laughter. She is survived by her daughters: Laura Champion of Reston, VA, Leslie Perkins and her husband Jed of Essex, Lynda Treanor of Morrisville, VT, and Lea Culhane and her husband Robert of Hudson, MA. She also leaves her grandchildren: Cara Hancy and her husband Steve, Tascha Perkins, Arthur Treanor and his wife Heather, Jessica Eisenlord and her husband Steve, Tiffany Dahlstrom, Sean Culhane, Miranda Bates and her husband Nick, and their families. Ellie was blessed and so proud to have gotten to meet her nine great-grandchildren: Arthur, Hunter, Gavin, Lyric, Aurora, Fallon, Vincent, Slate, and Katya. She was an irreplaceable example of love, strength, and the power of being there for those you love on big days and for small moments. She will be missed so very much by her family and all her many friends. The family would like to extend its gratitude to the dedicated staff of Saybrook at Haddam, for the excellent level of care Ellie received this past year. A private service will be held February 8th at Robinson, Wright, & Weymer Funeral Home, Centerbrook, CT. To share a memory of Ellie or send condolences to her family please visit www.rwwfh.com. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in her memory to the National MS Society, the Arthritis Foundation, Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore, or the Essex Library Association.