OLDEST IRISH AMERICAN NEWSPAPER IN USA, ESTABLISHED IN 1928

In Memoriam

Margaret N. Reilly

Margaret “Peggy” Nora Reilly, a resident of Bronxville, NY and one of the first female supervisors in Westchester County Department of Social Services, passed away on October 25th. She was 84-years-old.

Reilly was born and raised in Yonkers, the second of three daughters to James and Ellen Clifford.

As a child she was nicknamed Peggy. A self-declared tom-boy and a daddy’s girl, she was fearless from a young age. As an adult she recalled her days of playing outlaws and sheriffs with the neighborhood boys on Riverdale Avenue. Later in her life she would describe her childhood years with vivid fondness, transforming the busy streets of Yonkers into a kid’s perfect playground.

In 1951, Reilly graduated from Commerce High School, but her studies were interrupted when her father was diagnosed with emphysema. She decided to abandon her plans for college and instead went to work to help support her family during that challenging time.

She went on to marry Francis “Frank” Reilly in 1958. Together they had a set of identical twin boys, Peter and Paul, a set of fraternal twins, a boy, Sean, and a girl, Frances, and a daughter, Kathleen.

While her husband came to the United States with aspirations to become an opera singer, Reilly talked of becoming a judge or the sheriff. She worked in the Westchester County Office of Child Support Enforcement for the Department of Social Services. There she advocated for child support for children of divorce. There she became one of the first women to become a supervisor.

Reilly dedicated her life to advocating for families and mothers, she continued her work after her retirement with the National Coalition for Family Justice (NCFJ). There she helped women of divorce work to get child support from partners who tried to evade their financial responsibility to their families.

Reilly raised and financially supported her children singlehandedly, which meant having multiple jobs at once, something she proudly boasted later in life. Her favorite occupation was being a school crossing guard, keeping children safe on their way to school. Her youngest daughter, Kathleen, would frequently have to go with her as she wasn’t yet old enough to attend school herself.

Reilly often recalled the time when Kathleen was playing around in her car and accidentally sent the vehicle - with herself in it - flying down a hill. With superhero strength, fueled by the determination that can only be explained as a mother trying to save her child, she ran down after the car and managed to slip inside before it crashed. She always said she would be able to lift buildings with the love she had for her babies - that love saved Kathleen, and the car that day.

That was just one of many instances where Peggy Reilly saved the world.

In the summer of 1996 her world was turned on its head, literally. Reilly fell down a flight of stairs in Ireland while on vacation and suffered internal bleeding in her brain. She was rushed to a Dublin hospital and had a dime-sized piece of her brain removed. Reilly was in a coma, and remained in the hospital for six weeks. For each of those weeks, one of her five children came over from America, took turns to be there with her. They followed their mother’s rules, “watch your step, mind your P+Q’s, take care of each other.”

However traumatic, that injury did not hold Peggy Reilly back by any means. She continued to go to Curves gym, volunteer her time with the Yonkers Historical Society and the NCFJ. She continued to defy expectations when she decided to prove to the world that it’s never too late to go back to school.

In 2011 she received not one, but two diplomas. She walked across the stage as part of the graduating class of 2011, receiving her bachelor’s degree at SUNY Empire State College and her master’s degree (which she had actually completed in 1987) from Pace University. The ceremony at Lincoln Center brought an end to the decades worth of work and sacrifice.

Although many passersby that day assumed this family was celebrating an adult or grandchild, Reilly walked the streets of New York City proudly in her cap and gown. On the steps of Lincoln Center, she threw her arms up in celebration and exaltation. She did it. She did it for herself, for the first time, on her own terms.

In addition to her degrees, Reilly’s other accolades include being a decorated go-fish player and well-versed on the catalogue of crooners from the 30’s and 40’s. She loved a cup of Barry’s tea with a splash of milk, and it went even better with a scone - or Irish Soda Bread if it was in season. She celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with as much pride as the Fourth of July, and she never missed a birthday, even if it meant she had to sing to you over the phone.

“I’ll be there with bells on,” she always said in her sing-songy voice to her grandchildren. Reilly never missed a recital, a hockey game or impromptu musical performance. She opened her home to violin practice and math tutoring. To her grandkids she was the gold standard of what it meant to be a mother, advocate and protector - all that is good in this world.

In an age of superheroes, those who knew her never had to turn to comic books to recognize that Wonder Woman lived among them. Her power was to love unconditionally with all of her heart and soul. She dedicated every day of her life to serving others, an example that those who knew her could only aspire to emulate.

She is survived by four of her children and their spouses, Peter Reilly and Maryanne Reilly of Lake Mary, Florida, Regina Maimoni Reilly of Yonkers, David Smith and Frances Reilly Smith of Yonkers, Sean Reilly and Valerie Reilly of Yorktown and Michael Hymes and Kathleen Reilly Hymes of Manhattan. She is also remembered by her eight grandchildren, Katherine, Meghan, Clare, Emma, Jonathan, Elizabeth, Cameron and Caeley. Her sisters, Patricia Clifford Bilz and Eileen Clifford Price, survive her. In heaven she joins her husband Francis P. Reilly who passed away in 2000 and her late son Paul Reilly, who passed in May of 2016.

Alice Knox

Alice Knox of Manhattan, New York, formerly of Scotland passed away on October 1st 2018. She was 69 years old.

Alice was born in Greenock, Scotland to Mr and Mrs. Francis Horler. She was one of nine children. Alice was raised in Greenock where she attended St Joseph’s primary school and St Mary’s secondary school. She would later move to New York in June of 1968 to be with her older sister Martha and an opportunity to better herself.

Alice loved NYC. She began her career as a nanny before working for AT&T as an overseas operator. It was while working at AT&T she would meet her husband of 31 years Robert Knox of Sligo, Ireland. They would meet at a party in NY where Alice was introduced to Robert by her friend Helen Gregoire. The couple would marry in St Sebastians Church in Woodside on March 22nd 1987. They would raise their daughter Alice in Woodside before moving to Manhattan. Alice loved Manhattan. Her favorite pastime was shopping for a good bargain. She also enjoyed traveling to foreign countries, collecting Llardo and reading fiction.

Alice will be remembered as a strong willed lady and never let anything stop her. She was a lady who was driven smart, loving, beautiful caring and compassionate. She had a dry sense of humor and will be missed by everyone that knew her.

Alice leaves behind her husband Robert, her Daughter Alice and son in law Chris Ryan, her brother's; Frankie, John and Jim. Her sisters; Anne, Mary, Josephine, grace and her grandson Colin Robert Ryan. She is predeceased by her sister Martha.

A celebration of Alice's life will take place at the Pelham Funeral Home, located at 64 Lincoln Avenue, Pelham, NY, on Thursday October 4th from 4-9 PM. Alice will be repatriated home to Greenock Scotland where a mass of Christian burial will take place at St. Ninians Church. Interment will follow at Knocknairshill Cemetery. In Lieu of flowers donations may be made in Alice's name to Calvary Hospice. https://www.calvaryhospital.org/

For more information or to leave a condolence please visit www.pelhamfuneral.com

Margaret Mary Burke

Margaret Mary Burke

Margaret "Meg" Burke of Pelham Manor, New York, passed away on Thursday, March 15, 2018. She was 76 years old.

Born in New Rochelle NY to William Telford and Kathleen Dooley, Meg was the eldest of two and was raised in Pelham Manor with her brother Bill. She graduated from Pelham Memorial High School before attending the Brockport State teachers College. After attending Brockport State Meg began working as a travel agent for AAA. Meg loved to travel with her late husband Walter. Through her life long career as a travel agent the couple would travel the world. When Meg wasn't on an international excursion she could be found at the Shamrock House in East Durham or spending time at the Irish Benevolent society where she had served as president. Margaret will be remembered as a straight shooter with a great personality. She was giving and was always ready to help. Margaret is survived by her brother William "Bill" Telford (Janet) of CT, her sister-in-laws Eileen Lunberg of the Bronx and Theresa Brosnan of Florida.

A celebration of Margarets life will take place at the Pelham Funeral Home, located at 64 Lincoln Avenue, Pelham, NY, on Thursday, March 22nd from 9:30 AM to 10:30 AM. A mass of Christian Burial will take place at St. Catherines Church, located 25 second Avenue, Pelham NY. on Thursday, March 22nd at 11:00 AM. Interment will follow at Beechwood Cemetery In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Margarets Memory to a charity of your choice.

Kathleen “Kay” Brennan

Kathleen “Kay” Brennan Brennan, Kathleen "Kay" C. WATERVLIET Kathleen "Kay" C. Brennan of Watervliet, passed away peacefully on February 21, 2018, at 88 years of age. Kay was born in County Kildare, Ireland and immigrated to Tuckahoe, N.Y. as a young girl, where she lived until she was 75. She then moved to Albany and resided for the last four years at Shaker Pointe in Watervliet. Kay was predeceased by the love of her life, George K. Brennan, with whom she shared 37 years of marriage before his untimely passing in 1988. She was also predeceased by her daughter Ann P. Shoureck of Poughkeepsie; her grandson, Christopher McCormack of Latham; and her sister, Anna Barlow of England. She is survived by three daughters, Eileen (Tom) Murphy and Kathy McCormack of Latham, Peggy (Chris) Martin of Newtown, Conn.; and her son, Kevin (Alison) Brennan of Portchester, N.Y. She also leaves behind 12 grandchildren, Caroline, Jack and Patrick Murphy, Kevin and Sean McCormack, Ryan, Conor and Brendan (Colleen) Martin, Caitlin and Meghan Shoureck and Zoe and Jayden Kim; as well as a great-granddaughter, Elodie Martin; and five cherished nieces and nephews in England. Kay will be remember as a loving wife, mother, aunt, sister and grandmother and a friend to many. She embraced her Irish heritage, and along with her husband, was a founding member of the Eastchester Irish American Social Club. She was an inspiration to her family and friends and had a zest for life right up until her passing. She loved to travel the world, seeing new and old places and meeting new people. She was employed for many years by Concordia College in Bronxville in the Bursar's Office where she loved interacting with college students. She will be dearly missed by all who knew her. A special thanks to Kay's friends and the staff at Shaker Pointe for their care and love over these last few weeks. Funeral Mass was held on Monday, February 26 in the Immaculate Conception Church in Tuckahoe with burial in the Holy Mount Cemetery, Eastchester, N.Y. A celebration of Kay's life will also be held on Saturday, March 10, at 1 p.m. at Shaker Pointe, 1 Bell Tower Dr., Watervliet

Eileen Courtney

One Year Anniversary Remembrance
Eileen Courtney
February 21, 1953 – March 25, 2017
You can shed tears that she is gone
or you can smile because she has lived.
You can close your eyes and pray that she’ll come back
or you can open your eyes and see all she’s left.
Your heart can be empty because you can’t see her
or you can be full of the love you shared.
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.
You can remember her and only that she’s gone
or you can cherish her memory and let it live on.
You can cry and close your mind,
be empty and turn your back
or you can do what she’d want:
smile, open your eyes, love and go on.
An Anniversary Mass will be held at St. Barnabas Church 11:45am on Sunday, March 25th.
Mo Ghile Mear

Elizabeth Murphy

Elizabeth Murphy (née O’Keeffe) of Yonkers, NY. Born in Boherbue, Co. Cork, Ireland
May 8, 1931 - March 9, 2018 (86 years young).
Loving wife to her late husband James Murphy born in Ballydesmond, Co. Cork, Ireland.
Loving mother to daughter Margaret Burns (née Murphy) of Ridgefield, CT and son John Murphy, Newport Beach, CA. Beloved mother-in-law to John (JB) Burns and grandmother to Kiera Burns and Claire Burns. Loving sister to the late Denjoe O’Keeffe and to Connie O’Keeffe, Noreen O’Keeffe and Sheila Breen of Ireland and William O’Keeffe (Mary) of New Fairfield, CT and Margaret Powell of Nanuet, NY. Loving sister-in-law to Sheila Allen and the late Barty Murphy of Co. Cork, Ireland. Loving Aunt to nieces and nephews from Australia to Ireland and across the USA.
Visitation was Sunday, March 11, 2018 at Hodder Farenga Funeral Home,
899 McLean Ave, Yonkers, NY 10704.
Funeral Mass was Monday, March 12, 2018 at St. Barnabas Church,
409 East 241st, Bronx, NY 10470
followed by interment at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Valhalla, NY.
A heartfelt thank you for all who offered prayers and masses, and for those who came to visit and be with Mom and all her family at the hospital. An enormous debt of gratitude to her devoted doctor, Dr. Commentucci and the loving and caring nurses, doctors, and staff at St. John’s Riverside Hospital in Yonkers.
We are eternally grateful. 

Mary M. Houlihan

Mary M. Houlihan
Bronxville - Mary M. Houlihan, 90, of Bronxville NY and Palm Beach FL, died peacefully on February 3, 2018 at Calvary Hospital after a long illness. She is survived by her beloved husband of 66 years, James G Houlihan. A long-time resident of Bronxville, she previously resided in the Bronx, graduated from Our Lady of Angels Grammar School in 1939, Cathedral High School in 1943, College of Mount St. Vincent in 1947 and received her Master's degree from Fordham School of Social Services in 1949.
She worked as a social worker at Catholic Charities and then devoted herself to raising her children and serving as a volunteer and Eucharistic Minister. She served at Calvary Hospital, St Patrick's Home, The Pregnancy Care Center and Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital. Many years later, she returned to the study of social work, earning a doctorate in gerontology from the Fordham University School of Social Service in 1986.
Her dissertation, entitled "Family Caregivers of the Terminally-Ill and Elderly" was forward-thinking and ultimately had relevance in her own life.
She was predeceased by her parents, Rose and Joseph Murray, a sister, Rosaleen Sage, and three brothers, Msgr. James J Murray, John T Murray, and Patrick Murray.
In addition to her husband, she is survived by one sister, Sr. Mary Rose Murray, SU., her children: James J. (Patricia), John (Judy), William (Claire), Mary Coleman (James), Thomas (Genevieve), and Patricia MacRae (David).
She is also survived by eighteen cherished grandchildren: Christie Houlihan, Michael McEvoy, Kelly Buckley, Meghan McEvoy, Bryan Houlihan, Erin Flanagan, Kerry Salvatierra, Siobhan Houlihan, Katharine Houlihan, Ellen Houlihan, Terence Houlihan, Mary W. Houlihan, Caitlin, Kara and Kevin Coleman, Emily Houlihan, Timothy and Elizabeth MacRae and their respective spouses and seven great grandchildren: Kieran, Maggie and Grace Salvatierra, Molly and Josie Flanagan, and James and Charles Buckley.
The funeral was held on Wednesday, February 7 at St. Joseph's Church, Bronxville.
In lieu of flowers, donations are requested for Calvary Hospital
www.calvaryhospital.org

Sign up to our Daily Newsletter