April 23, 1941 – January 23, 2024
Ender was born to Sami and Nadire Ones on April 23, 1941 in Nigde, Turkey. Her father was a schoolteacher and headmaster, which inspired her to pursue a career in education. She earned her teaching degree from Istanbul Capa Egitim Fakultesi in 1961, specializing in English language instruction.
She met Frank Creel (T-2), a Peace Corps volunteer from Tulsa, Oklahoma, during his assignment in Turkey. They married on January 18, 1967, in a ceremony that was followed by a well-attended reception, despite the deep snow that had fallen overnight.
In the early years of their marriage, Ender raised her children and worked as a librarian at the University of Chicago, while Frank finished his doctorate. When the family moved to the Washington, DC area, she worked as a Turkish language instructor, first as a part-time tutor and then as a full-time teacher. She excelled as a teacher and was recognized for her talents and skills. A longtime member of the American Association of Teachers for Turkic Languages, she served on the Executive Board and the Testing and Assessment Committee, where she was instrumental in establishing Turkish Proficiency Standards that are used in academic institutions today. She was most passionate about teaching and was committed to helping her students succeed. In turn, she was well-loved by her students who embraced her mantra, “Turkce zor degil!” (Turkish isn’t difficult!).
She was a fixture in the Arlington community and beloved by her neighbors. She spent several years active with the Arlington Historical Society, serving as a docent at the Arlington Historical Museum. She was also an expert gardener, earning an award for Garden of the Year from the Rock Creek Garden Club in 2011. In honor of Frank’s service in Vietnam, she volunteered her gardening skills to tend to the Veterans Common, a small resting area on the W&OD Trail.
Ender is preceded in death by her beloved husband, Frank Creel, her parents, Sami and Nadire Ones, her brother, Ferda Ones and sister, Cigdem Goksel.
She is survived by her children, Derya (Peter) Slivka, Berna (John) Diehl, James (Lucia) Creel, her grandchildren, Owen and Noah Slivka, and Lucas, Aaron and Jacob Diehl, and her siblings, Esin Eryuksel and Cumhur Ones.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Stroke Comeback Center, which provided Ender with support and community during her stroke recovery.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, February 2, 2024 at National Funeral Home & Memorial Park, 7482 Lee Highway, Falls Church, VA 22042. The burial ceremony will begin at 2 p.m. and will be followed by a memorial and reception at 3 p.m.