Saturday, August 28, 2010

An Irish Wake

I grew up with 3 Memeres but despite the best efforts of the French side of the family I'm all Irish. Our favorite tradition, and one that holds our family tightly together, is the Irish Wake. Early Friday morning my last garndparent passed away. I find I'm not sad-- you was very anxious to get to see her George again. I'm sure she's in her best pencil skirt, heels and pearls. I'm sure he greeted her with a gift of a new white blouse-- she had one every spring. Now they are dancing all over heaven. When they need a break they'll sit and sing as he plays organ.
So last night many of us gathered and made posters of pictures: all 7 of her kids, all her siblings, all 27 grandchildren and all 40 great grandchildren-- we hope-- but one is expected this weekend. We talked, laughed, share a drink (or two). We learned who is struggling and who is expecting, who is looking for work and who wants to retire. We reinforced the ties that bind us all together. Below is her obituary. 2 paragraphs do not tell the story of her 88 years and her 62 year marraige. Its told in the laughter of her grandchildren and the tears of her children.

Madeleine D. (Paquin) Murphy

Madeleine D. Murphy 1922 2010 CHICOPEE Madeleine D. (Paquin) Murphy, 88, of The Arbors in Chicopee was Called Safely Home on Friday, August 27, 2010. She was born in Chicopee on May 2, 1922, a beloved daughter of the late Wilfrid and Florence (Denette) Paquin. She was raised in Holyoke where she graduated from the former Our Lady of Perpetual Help Elementary School and moved to Manning Street in the Fairview section of Chicopee in 1961. In 2003, she moved to Westfield and after the death of her husband George, she became a resident of The Arbors in Chicopee. During her early working career, she worked at the former Sinclair Wire Company in Holyoke and later was the snack bar manager at the former Zayre's Department Store on Memorial Drive in Chicopee. She was a communicant of Saint Anne Church in Fairview where she was a member of the Ladies of Saint Anne Sodality and a longtime member of the Senior Choir. She was also very active in the Fairview Parent Teacher Association in Chicopee. She adored her family and showered them with her love and affection which was returned to her a thousand fold. She was predeceased by her beloved husband and best friend, George F. Murphy who was Called Home on February 21, 2004. They were married at the former Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Holyoke on April 26, 1941 and were blessed with over 62 years of happiness together. She was also predeceased by her baby son, Joseph Murphy and her dear brother and sister, Clarence "Nick" Paquin and Lorraine Paquin. She leaves her seven loving children, George W. Murphy and his wife, MiJa of Franklin, MA, James F. Murphy and his wife, Dianne of Holyoke, Edward T. Murphy and his wife, Karen of Douglasville, GA, Robert D. Murphy and his wife, Clare of South Hadley, Stephen P. Murphy and his wife, Beth of Westfield, Timothy J. Murphy and his wife, Eileen of Westfield and Ann Marie Novak and her husband, Michael of Granby; her 27 cherished grandchildren; her 40 cherished great grandchildren; her dear brothers, George Paquin of Holyoke and Armand Paquin of South Hadley; her dear sisters, Irene Cote of South Hadley, Mary LaCoste and her husband, Roger of Poughkeepsie, NY and Jeanne Toth and her husband, John of Manchester, NH and her many dear nephews and nieces. Her funeral will be held on Tuesday morning, August 31, 2010 at 8:30 a.m. from the St. Pierre Phaneuf Fairview Chapels, (413-533-3307), 506 Britton Street, Chicopee, MA 01020 followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in Saint Anne Church, 30 College Street in Chicopee. Her burial will follow the Mass at Saint Jerome Cemetery on Northampton Street in Holyoke. Her family will receive friends at the funeral home on Monday, August 30, 2010 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. The parking lot is located in the rear of the funeral home. Her family has requested that memorial donations be made in her memory to the Saint Anne Church Memorial Fund, 30 College Street, Chicopee, MA 01020.

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