Cape Breton Post - - IN MEMORIAM -

Lex­ing­ton, Mass./North Syd­ney

Mary Cather­ine (Quirk) Fitzger­ald, 91, of Lex­ing­ton, Mass., died peace­fully on July 22, 2015, af­ter liv­ing a long and happy life with love, spir­i­tu­al­ity, and de­ter­mi­na­tion.

She was born 1924 in North Syd­ney, Cape Bre­ton Is­land. Her car­ing par­ents were Louis Quirk of New­found­land and Mary Camp­bell of Boisdale. Camp­bell an­ces­tors sailed from the He­brides is­lands of Scot­land and set­tled Cape Bre­ton in the 1830s.

Mrs. Fitzger­ald was raised in a de­vout Catholic fam­ily of 10 chil­dren. Af­ter grad­u­at­ing St. Joseph High School, she worked at Ja­balee’s mar­ket in North Syd­ney for a few years. Seek­ing more op­por­tu­nity, she moved to Bos­ton in 1952 to live with an aunt who had pre­vi­ously left Cape Bre­ton in 1922. Mary’s first job in Amer­ica was at a Wool­worth depart­ment store. Shortly af­ter­wards, she started work­ing at Har­vard Univer­sity where she had a long ca­reer meet­ing in­ter­est­ing peo- ple from across the world un­til re­tir­ing in 2001.

She mar­ried John F. Fitzger­ald of Bos­ton in 1960. The wed­ding was at Sa­cred Heart Church in Lex­ing­ton with a hon­ey­moon at Ni­a­gara Falls. Af­ter­wards, they set­tled in Lex­ing­ton, Mass., and had three won­der­ful chil­dren.

Mrs. Fitzger­ald faced the big­gest chal­lenge of her life when her hus­band died in 1968. In­stead of mov­ing back to Nova Sco­tia she pur­chased a house in Lex­ing­ton and raised her chil­dren in a lov­ing fam­ily. She re­tired in her late 70s and kept busy with fam­ily and friends. Through­out her life Mary never for­got her Cape Bre­ton roots. She en­joyed the rocky Maine sea­coast and gath­er­ing with friends for tea and pas­tries to chat about latest news.

A big thrill for her was shak­ing hands with John F. Kennedy in 1960 at a pres­i­den­tial cam­paign din­ner in Bos­ton. Also, she paid off the mort­gage to own her home.

She is sur­vived by three chil­dren, Daniel and his wife Karen, James, and Janet; and five grand­chil­dren, Ash­ley and her hus­band Shane Geib, Kayla and Daniel Fitzger­ald, Alexandria and Vic­to­ria Gon­za­les. Also sur­vived by her sis­ter, Regina Decourcey of Syd­ney and Ron­ald Quirk of North Syd­ney, and her god­chil­dren El­iz­a­beth Liv­ing­stone-Pinto and her hus­band, Luiz and John Du­gan, as well as many other nieces and neph­ews.

She was pre­de­ceased by four sis­ters, Noella, Alice, Joan, Theresa; and four broth­ers, Louis, Daniel, John, and Peter.

Spe­cial thanks to her long­time friends Carol Rocco and James Sul­li­van, both of Lex­ing­ton.

Ar­range­ments by Devito Fu­neral Home in Ar­ling­ton, Mas­sachusetts.

Fu­neral mass at St. Agnes Church in Ar­ling­ton fol­lowed by burial at Westview Ceme­tery in Lex­ing­ton, Mass.

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