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Mary Frances (Donoghue) McDonnell

August 18, 1933 ~ November 27, 2020 (age 87)

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A Funeral Mass at St. Patrick Church in Watertown for Mary F. McDonnell will be held privately due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.


Mary McDonnell devoted her life to family, friendship, and caring. Her greatest joy was spending time with family and friends, especially her four loving granddaughters.


Born and raised in Roslindale (Boston) MA, Mary graduated from her beloved St. Thomas Aquinas High School in 1950, nurtured and taught by the wonderful Sister’s of St. Joseph.  A proud 1953 graduate of St. Elizabeth’s Hospital School of Nursing in Brighton (Boston), she spent nearly an entire 40-year nursing career as a registered nurse at St. Elizabeth’s.  She worked most of those years in the maternity units, helping new mothers bring their babies into the world, and prepare for their own lifetimes of motherhood.


Mary’s commitment to caring went well beyond her professional life.  She brought her love, compassion and selflessness to not only her children and grandchildren, but also to those family members, immediate and extended, whenever they needed her special blend of love, guidance and medical expertise. 


Of course, Mary and the McDonnell family have been blessed to receive so much love and compassion.  Her neighbors on her street in Watertown created an extended family and support network, a safety net of friendship and protection that enabled Mary to live every day of her life since 1965 at the house she loved so much.


Near the end of her journey, Mary received a level of care and love from Compassionate Care Hospice and Hope Home Care that cannot be adequately expressed in words.  We are forever thankful that these angels came to our house to enable Mary to live these past few months in comfort and peace.


We loved and love our Mom, Nana and Auntie so much, and while we will think of her and miss her every day, we find comfort and peace in knowing how much she enriched not only our lives, but those of everyone she touched: as a mother, a nurse, and a friend.


She was the beloved wife of the late John Joseph McDonnell, Jr. Devoted mother of Stephen P. McDonnell & his wife Betsy of Florida and Maura M. Lucier & her husband Robert of Shrewsbury. Loving grandmother of Caitlin Struhs & her husband T.J., Molly McDonnell, Nicole Lucier & Jennifer Lucier. Beloved daughter of the late Patrick J. & Beatrice (Conway) Donoghue. Dear sister of the late Helen A. Donoghue. Dear lifelong devoted cousin of Mary Grady & Liz Arnold. Loving aunt of Robert O’Connell & Amy Griffin.


A visitation and a Funeral Mass at St. Patrick Church, Watertown will be held privately.


In lieu of flowers, memorials in Mary's memory may be made to the Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress (MDSC) 20 Burlington Mall Road Suite 261, Burlington, MA 01803 or at www.mdsc.org/ 

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mary Frances (Donoghue) McDonnell, please visit our floral store.


Private Services


Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress (MDSC)
20 Burlington Mall Road Suite 261, Burlington MA 01803
Web: http://www.mdsc.org/

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