Kennedys' former maid, 92, pays last respects to 'my lady'

May 24, 1994|By New York Daily News

NEW YORK -- She was their blue-eyed, sparrow-boned Lilly, who brimmed with pride at the top-hatted young president and his sweet-faced wife whose satin gowns she tended, so lovingly, back then.

Now her Jackie was being laid to rest, and Elizabeth Montgomery -- 92 years old now, three decades after she was personal maid to the first lady and then to the widow, had put on her finest navy suit and tiny gold earrings and bused eight blocks down Second Ave. to say goodbye.

"I was like family," Lilly said, fighting tears. "I helped her get dressed, I cleaned her clothes, I shopped for her and I was at her president's inauguration, and throughout it all she never said a mean word to me."

She struggled -- vainly -- to make her way yesterday through the grief-hushed mourners across from the St. Ignatius Loyola Catholic Church, where the mahogany coffin and the ferns and the lilies of the valley had just arrived.

"I thank God," she said. "My lady is out of her pain."

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