Monday, March 06, 2006

Aunt Margaret

The first time I ever came to New York was approximately 12 years ago when I was a grand age of 22 or so.  Three of my friends and two of my cousins decided to make the trip with me to celebrate new years eve in times square.  When I had initially mentioned my plans to my dad, he voiced that there was no need to find a hotel in the big apple, we had family to stay with.  Family which I had not seen since I was eight. 
At first I was wary, how do you call up people who are complete strangers and ask to stay for a few days with five people in tow?  I mean, they are family, but they are my dad's removed is that?
Then my dad said the magic words:  "They are just like Aunt Pat, they love company."  My Aunt Pat LOVES entertaining, and with that I made the fated call. 
My god were these people excited to hear I was coming out.  Seems my dad was stationed in new york once upon a time when he was a young lad in the army, and he spent quite a bit of social time with these folks.  They adore my dad, and the excitement of having Reece's daughter out was almost too much for them to take. 
When we arrived to Tuckahoe we met the whole clan:  Joan and Ray, my dad's cousins, Ray Jr, Anthony, Jill and James (their kids) and of course Aunt Margaret, my dad's aunt and the matriarch of the Cooney/Meegan family.  We walked in that door and it was like coming home, they were so welcoming and generous.  It always amazes me how much family can have in common just because of our DNA. 
Right away we made the introductions and then IT WAS ON.  Drinks were handed out and we started playing asshole at 3pm, pre-gaming before we headed to the city for the ball drop.  Now, you know I felt right home since I could get to drinking right away.  It was just that much more amazing that all three generations were drinking and egging myself and my friends on. 
Then the moment of truth.  I lit up a cigarette, and realized my company.  Quickly I explained that my parents did not know I smoked, and asked my newfound family not to say anything.  My Great Aunt Maragret said in her raspy voice while laughing:
"Oh please.  I'm drinking and smoking and look at me!  I'm seventy-two and I'm fine!"
Awesome, absolutely awesome.  This really was my family.  It was the defining moment that I truly felt that I was among my own.
Aunt Margaret passed away this weekend, tonight I will be going to the viewing and hopefully attending the funeral tomorrow as well.  She was an amazing woman, and she lived long and full life.  The Irish family will all be coming together, and I'm sure that the joy she spread in her life will be celebrated and remembered with much aplomb.

Margaret B. Meegan

Born: November 27, 1921

Died: March 04, 2006


Services:Tuesday, March 7, 2006 at 9:30AM Immaculate Conception Church, Tuckahoe,NY Interment Woodlawn Cemetery

Visitation:Sunday 7-9PM Monday 2-4, 7-9PM


Margaret B. Meegan, nee O'Keefe, 84, died on March 4, 2006. Beloved wife of the late Joseph. Devoted mother of Peggy Dowd and her husband Pat, Joan Stabile and her husband Ray, the late Betty Ann Lubrino, Kathleen Cohn and her husband Walter and Grace Dellapi. Loving grandmother of seventeen. Cherished great grandmother of sixteen. Also surviving is Margaret's son-in-law, Ralph Lubrino. Friends may gather at Westchester Funeral Home, Inc., Eastchester on Sunday from 7-9 p.m. and Monday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial on Tuesday 9:30 a.m. at Immaculate Conception Church, Tuckahoe. Interment to follow at Woodlawn Cemetery

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