It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of our oldest sister at the age of 68, Katherine Ann “Cathy”O’Donnell which occurred on December 2, 2019. Cathy was born in Saint John on October 30th, 1951 and the oldest daughter of the Late Lawerence Edmund O’Donnell and the Late Marie Anne (Caissie) O’Donnell. Age 19 Cathy started work at Brooke Bond Tea Factory (Red Rose Tea) for approximately twenty years with almost perfect attendance. Cathy struggled and dealt with many challenges throughout her life’s journey. However, being employed she felt very fortunate and took the initiative to purchase a home for herself, her siblings and parents to reside in. After years of renting, Cathy was very proud to be able to provide her family with a home to call their own. This awarded her a feeling of achievement and accomplishment which she would speak about for years to come. In her early days, Cathy adopted and cherished her fur-baby poodles, Heidi, Buffy, Cookie and Ginger. At a young age, Cathy reached out and found salvation in the Catholic Church and she spent several days a week praying with Rosary in Hand at St. Peter’s Church.
Cathy was President of People’s First advocating for people with disabilities. Cathy spoke at conferences and seminars communicating her message ‘People With Disabilities Matter’. Cathy was an inspiration sharing her story of challenges she faced, obstacles she fought to overcome and achievements she realized along the way. She was a member of Saint John Association of Community Living, NB Association of Community Living, Mental Health and registered with CNIB. Cathy was devoted and sincere to all her friends and held them in the highest esteem. Cathy is survived by her sisters, Marilyn O’Donnell, Sandra Mosher (Stephen), Bonnie McKinnon (Alan) and Patty O’Donnell, nephew, Saint John Firefighter, Joseph James Shelley, sister-in-law Christene Schafer, nieces, Sabrina Butterfly O’Donnell, Corissa Spring O’Donnell and great niece, Violet Walker.
Cathy was predeceased by her parents, Lawerence Edmund O’Donnell (July 1, 2010) and Marie Anne (Caissie) O’Donnell (February 28, 2011) and brother, Gary Charles O’Donnell (August 11, 2019).
The Family extends thanks to Senior Watch for the excellent homecare it provided 2011-2016 and thanks to our cousin Bee Gauvin for referring Senior Watch for Cathy’s Girls. The Family also extends thanks to Rocmaura Nursing Home for all the attention, care and support Cathy received during her stay. In April 2017 Cathy transferred to Loch Lomond Village/Dogwood Lane (Young at Heart). The Family further extends a special thank you to everyone at the Village for providing entertainment, singing, dancing, outdoor cycling, enjoyment of the Village swing, social activities, support persons for friendship, Church Services, excellent personal and health care for her safety, mental and physical health and well-being. The Family is grateful for your hard work, patience, empathy and compassion you showed our Sister.
Arrangements are under the direction of Fundy Funeral Home, 230 Westmorland Road (646-2424) By Cathy’s request cremation has taken place. Private interment will be beside her parents at Ocean View Memorial Gardens. R.I.P. Dear Sister. Donations in Cathy’s memory can be made to People’s First, Mental Health, SJACL, NBACL, CNIB or to the charity of the donor’s choice. To send a message of condolence please visit www.fundyfuneralhome.com
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