OBITUARY: Elinor J. (Donahue) Lyons Backman, 88

Below is an obituary from Cromwell Funeral Home:

CROMWELL, CT — It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our mother, Elinor J. (Donahue) Lyons Backman, 88, of Cromwell, CT on March 22, 2023. Born in Medford MA, she was the daughter of the late John and Florence (Glennon) Donahue. Elinor (El) grew up in Wilmington, MA, and eventually settled in Wethersfield where she dedicated her life to raising her four children. As a working mother, she never missed a sporting or school event. Her organizational skills and attention to detail excelled throughout her personal life and professionally as a paralegal, retiring eventually from Day, Berry & Howard. El was a very strong, independent woman; a true New Englander who was a straight shooter with a wonderful dry sense of humor and quick wit. She was very artistic & creative which showed in her many hobbies leaving each of us with something very personal to remember her by. She was an avid reader, loved the arts, history and enjoyed a good dessert & party!

Elinor is survived by her sons Chris Lyons of Wethersfield, Peter Lyons (Debbie) of East Aurora, NY; daughter, Jeanne Delisle (David) of Cromwell and daughter-in-law, Cynthia Lyons of Uxbridge, MA; 8 loving grandchildren, Carolyn (Sean), Kelly (Andrew), Erin (Dave), Hillary, Sara, Peter, Bridget, & Cortney and 3 great grandchildren, Elle, Evelyn, and William; sister, Carol Saxon, sister-in-law, Janet Backman, stepson Carl Backman III, 4 step grandchildren, 2 step great grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

Besides her parents, Elinor was predeceased by her beloved husband, Carl Backman; son, John (Jack) Lyons; daughter-in-law, Sue-Ellen Lyons and brothers, Howard, Edward (Teddy) and Thomas Donahue.

El had a special relationship with each of her children & grandchildren, she will be remembered by how she lived and the example that she set. She will be greatly missed.

Calling hours will be Tuesday, March 28th from 8:30 am to 9:30 am at the Cromwell Funeral Home, 506 Main Street, Cromwell, CT, followed by a Mass of Christian burial at 10:00 am at St John Church, 5 St John Court, Cromwell CT with burial immediately following at Village Cemetery in Old Wethersfield. In lieu of flowers, donations in El’s memory may be made to Team Suzy Q / Pan-Mass Challenge ( Cromwell Funeral Home is handling the arrangements. To share memories or send condolences to the family, please visit

Elinor June (Donahue) Lyons Backman

Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s