Eugene "Gene" W. O'Brien

April 1, 1929September 4, 2021
Obituary of {subject.fullNameWithPrefixAndSuffix}


Murphy Funeral Homes

Eugene (Gene) William O'Brien, age 92, passed from this life to his eternal rest on 9/4/21. Gene was born to Florence Elizabeth and James Stephen O'Brien, both now deceased, on April 1, 1929, in Richmond Hill, Queens, New York. His family, including his sisters Dorothy Marie Cederquest, and Audrey Clare Brophy, (both now deceased) resided in Laurelton, Queens, but moved in his early years to Manhattan. Gene was educated in New York City's public elementary schools and Stuyvesant High School. Gene also attended City College of New York and New York University.

Gene was married to Catherine Margaret, his loving wife for 65 years, who is now deceased. He is survived by daughters Patricia E. Cotrone (Alan), Ellen T. McCoy (Stephen), and Cathleen A. O'Brien, and sons James R. O'Brien, Robert W. O'Brien , Thomas E. O'Brien Sr. (Jean), and William J. O'Brien (Kimberly). He is also survived by 13 grandchildren: Kimberley Wolf (Matthew), Danielle E. Cotrone, Patrick R. O'Brien, Nicole C. O'Brien, Katherine A. Clark, Michael J. O'Brien (Jennifer), Christopher M. Cotrone (Marbella), Kelley A. O'Brien, Sarah M. O'Brien, Thomas E. O'Brien, Jr., (Darcie), Christine R. McCoy, Colleen M. O'Brien and Mary E. O'Brien; and five great-grandchildren: William Cotrone, Abigail Cotrone, Jake Wolf, Kelan O'Brien/Larry, Olivia A. O'Brien/Larry, and Fiona J. O'Brien.

After employment as a merchandiser for Montgomery Ward Co. in New York City, (where he met his future wife Catherine), he transitioned to a career as a Federal civil servant, working for the U.S. Army, on Long Island; then the Dept. of Defense in New York City, and later for the U.S. Navy in Washington, D. C. His career encompassed positions as management analyst, production controller, industrial engineer, budget analyst, program analyst, and eventually program manager, which spanned 33 years until his retirement in 1986.

His leisure time involved, (in addition to running a taxi service for the kids,) umpiring Little League baseball. He was a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus and Honorary Lifetime member of the Knights of Columbus. He was chosen as the first locally grown Grand Knight of the then recently formed Rt. Rev. Msgr. Wm. Delaney Council of the Knights, in Farmingdale, Nassau County, NY.

Employment necessitated a move from Farmingdale, N.Y., to Springfield, VA. Following retirement he moved to the Durham, N. C. area in 1989, and subsequently to Raleigh N. C., and then to Annandale VA. He was an enthusiastic member of the Holy Infant Roman Catholic Community in Durham. He served as Chair of the Parish's Bishop's Annual Appeal, and chaired the Parish Finance Council for the last 3 years of his 8 years of service on that Council. During his tenure the parish acquired a new Priests Residence and paid off all of its existing debt. He was active in the parish's 50+ Club, organizing trips and social functions, and with his wife enjoyed delivering “Meals-on-Wheels” to the home-bound of the community. He loved bowling, and for many years was the Secretary/Treasurer of the Senior Classic Bowling League in Durham. Upon his return to VA, he became a member of St. Philip Roman Catholic Church in Falls Church, VA.

Internment will be in the Fairfax Memorial Park in Fairfax, VA. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to either: St. Philip Catholic Church, 7500 Saint Philip Court, Falls Church, VA 22042 OR Holy Infant Catholic Church (Building Fund), 5000 Southpark Drive, Durham, NC

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the O'Brien family.

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Past Services

Sunday, September 12, 2021


Sunday, September 12, 2021


Monday, September 13, 2021

Mass of Christian Burial

Monday, September 13, 2021

Committal Service