Though a busy wife, mother, and homemaker, she found time to volunteer in her community. She served on the Women's Board of Abington Memorial Hospital for 55 years, and chaired the hospital's June Fete fund-raiser in 1964 and 1968.
Mrs. Elder served on the board of trustees of the University of the Arts; was on the board of the International House of Philadelphia; was a member of the Junior League of Philadelphia; and volunteered with Meals on Wheels.
She was a longtime member of Abington Presbyterian Church.
Smart and fun to be with, Mrs. Elder had enthusiasm for everything she did. She had many friends.
"She loved her adopted city of Philadelphia and everything it had to offer," her family said in a tribute. "No one visited from out of town without a tour of the city."
She enjoyed traveling with her husband, Robert M. The two became interested in Kenya and its animals. As a result, the Elders were named to the board of directors of the African Fund for Endangered Wildlife in Nairobi. The group worked to save the endangered Rothschild's giraffe and the black rhinoceros.
Mrs. Elder's husband died in 2003. They had been married for 59 years.
Surviving are a daughter, Martha Carpenter; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. Two other daughters, Laurie Atchley and Mary Carter, died earlier.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, July 24, in the auditorium of Rydal Park Retirement Community, 1515 The Fairway, Jenkintown. Interment was private.
Contributions may be sent to the Women's Board of Abington Memorial Hospital, 1200 Old York Rd., Abington, Pa. 19001, or to Handy Training Centers Inc., 5021 Wakefield St., Philadelphia 19144.