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Marie Mulvihill RooneyMay 8, 1930 ~ June 22, 2017 (age 87)
Marie Agnes (Pat) Rooney (nee’ Mulvihill) died peacefully at home, surrounded by her family on Tuesday, June 22, 2017. She was 87 years old.
Pat, short for Patty, was a nickname given to Marie, our mother, by her beloved father Francis, who tragically passed away when Pat was sixteen.
Born May 8, 1930, Pat was raised in the ‘Irish’ section of Atlantic City, NJ, at a time when it was not uncommon to grow up surrounded by generations of extended family, and to have one’s earliest memories filled with, and shared by countless cousins, aunts, uncles and friends so close they blurred the definition of family.
Pat always remembered the earliest years of her life with unreserved affection, and as a period during which she formed some of her most important, life-long friendships.
Pat is survived by her second husband, Eugene C. (Gene) Rooney, of Cleveland, Ohio, with whom she spent the last 54 years of her life, by her three children- Jeffrey, Johanna (Jo) Renshaw and her husband Gregory Jordan, and Michael and his wife Christina (nee’ Matta); eight grandchildren- Sheridan and Avery, by son Jeffrey, Kesshi Jordan and her husband Andrew Scheuermann, Alanna, Delaney, and John (Rider), by daughter Johanna and husband Greg, and Meghan Bennett (nee’ Renshaw) and her husband Matthew Bennett, and Erin Renshaw; and three great grandchildren, Audrey and Gabriel (Gabe) Bennett, born of Meghan and Matt, and Skye, daughter of Erin.
Pat graduated from Gwynedd Mercy College and spent a brief career as a medical lab technician before marrying her first husband John Rider Renshaw, of Centerville, MD. John was stationed at Patuxent River Naval Station in southern Maryland, a state which Pat would make her home for the remainder of her life.
John, a test pilot, would heroically sacrifice his life over the city of St. Louis (piloting a burning plane to ground, sparing loss of life to untold others) only months after the birth of their third child, Michael, in 1957. After this tragedy, with the support of her friends and family, most notably her mother Agnes (Grammy) and her younger brother Francis (Frank), Pat raised her three children as a single parent until her second marriage to Gene Rooney, an aerospace engineer at ‘Pax River’, in 1963.
Pat and Gene spent their first four years enjoying the special family atmosphere that exists within military communities, making many of their most important life-long friendships, before moving to Bethesda, MD, in the suburbs of Washington, D.C.
As Gene’s career progressed, taking him finally to the position of Chief of Performance, U.S Navy, one of the country’s top civilian military positions, Gene and Pat were fortunate to travel to many parts of the world, and, as is one of the recurring themes in Pat’s life, making life-long friendships along the way.
(It was once said of Pat, that if you found yourself standing next to her in line at the grocery store, there was a good chance that you had also found a friend.)
Pat and Gene would remain in Bethesda, summering at their second home in Wildwood Crest, NJ until 1995, when they moved to Fort Myers, FLA, now home to several life-long friends, and most importantly, close to her beloved baby brother Frank, his wife Sonja (Sonny) and their family.
In recent years, Pat and Gene returned to Maryland to be close to their children and, at the time of her death, were within weeks of completing and occupying a large addition to Jo and Greg’s home, and a short drive to the homes of their sons and family.
During her long and full life, Pat counted as her passion and interests: family, knitting (first and foremost a craft that kept alive the memory of her mother, Grammy, and that she would pass down to her progeny, as a living connection to generations past and future), and collecting antiques. Pat was an avid bridge player, and a voracious reader. She dabbled in art and had a beautiful singing voice. Indeed, all who knew Pat were familiar with her habit of humming her way through the day, the quiet soundtrack of her life.
Pat was fortunate to be surrounded by so much family during the last days, and weeks of her life.
All of us who knew her take solace in the fact that, as long as there is one of us to remember Pat/Mom/ Mimi, or any of us to come, who will come to know and love her through memory alone, she will always be with us.
To her father, Frank, her mother Agnes (Grammy), her beloved brother Frank and all the loved one’s she has joined, we ask that you say ’hello’, and ‘thank you’ to one we love.
Visitation will be at St. Peter's Catholic Church, 2900 Olney Sandy-Spring, MD 20832 on Friday, July 21, 2017 from 10:30 until 11:00 am with Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 am. Interment private.
Memorial contributions may be made to Montgomery Hospice, 1355 Piccard Drive, Rockville, MD 20850.
Arrangements by Cole Funeral Services, Rockville, MD (301) 871-1444
1355 Piccard Drive, Suite 100, Rockville MD 20850