Mass of Christian Burial
Obituary of Cathleen Teresa McKenna
On the morning of December 20th 2022 Cathleen Teresa McKenna (“Cathy”) of Somers, New York, was called to the Lord surrounded by family.
She was born to Joseph and Lilian McArdle on October 15th 1948 and grew up in Far Rockaway and Valley Stream, New York, alongside her three sisters, Patricia, Lorrie, and Dayle. She attended George W. Hewlett High School and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Lehman College.
In 1967 she met the love of her life, Gerard “Gerry” McKenna, and the two worked closely together for several years before Gerry had the courage to ask her on a date. Their love grew quickly over their shared sense of humor and love of travel. After a very brief courtship, Cathy and Gerry were married on October 27th 1973 and began their lives together in Parkchester, New York. In 1977, Cathy fell in love with Somers, New York, where the two would then share the next forty-five years together building a family
In a close-knit household, Cathy and Gerry raised three children, Daniel, Marshall and Jennifer. As a deeply devoted mother, Cathy never missed any of her children’s sporting events and truly loved planning family getaways, filling their childhood with countless memories driving across the country. Led by Cathy and Gerry, the entire family were active members of St. Patrick’s parish, in Bedford, New York, where they frequently volunteered at parish and school functions.
In 1996, the family outgrew their first home in Somers and set out to build a new home just a few miles away. From bedroom layouts to light switches, Cathy methodically designed every detail of the house where, to this day, you can feel her presence in every room. Soon after moving in, another member of the family was added, Liffey, the family’s beloved German wire-haired pointer, who brought so much joy to their household. After Liffey’s passing in 2009, Cathy was drawn to an independent-minded puppy named Evan who helped mend their hearts.
One of Cathy’s favorite activities was to sip a glass of wine on her deck, alongside Gerry, looking over her backyard and planning for their future. Cathy’s love for the beach was also unparalleled, she spent countless summers with her sisters at Jones Beach and Long Beach. On a summer day, you could always find Cathy out on the deck with Liffey or Evan enjoying the warmth of the sun. When she wasn’t outside, Cathy was in the kitchen or watching rented library movies with Gerry on the sofa. She loved to cook large meals and entertain her ever-growing family. Her family of five quickly became eight with the addition of her children’s spouses, Natalie (Daniel), Kaitlyn (Marshall), and Paul (Jennifer). Thanksgiving, a McKenna favorite, was filled with love, laughter, and her famous stuffing. Walking through the door at the McKenna house brought with it an immediate sense of warmth and love. No one would leave without leftovers and a personal wave goodbye from the driveway, no matter what the weather.
After her children left the nest, Cathy enjoyed her new role as a librarian at several local libraries, including in her current long-held position at John Jay High School. Over the years, students were drawn to Cathy’s kindness and warmth and she loved getting to know them and watching them grow. As much as she loved her job, her most cherished title was “Mom” and more recently, “Grandma Cathy.” Her world lit up when her granddaughter, Noelle, was born on February 24th 2021, followed by her new grandson, Patrick, born on December 16th 2022. Her legacy of kindness, compassion, and humility will live on for generations to come.
Family and Friends are invited to celebrate her life at Clark Associates Funeral Home, 4 Woods Bridge Road, Katonah, NY on Tuesday, December 27th from 4-8 PM.
The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Patrick’s Church, 7 Pound Ridge Road, Bedford, NY on Wednesday December 28th at 10 AM. Interment will follow at Gate of Heaven, 10 W Stevens Avenue, Hawthorne, NY 10532.
In lieu of flowers, friends and family may also support Northshore Animal League.