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Kraft Funeral Service

708 East Spring Street, New Albany, IN

OBITUARY

Mary Therese Chidester O'Connell

August 18, 1927December 1, 2019
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Mary Therese Chidester O'Connell, 92, passed away on December 1, 2019 in Salem, Indiana. Mary was a pioneer in broadcasting in the early 1950's in West Palm Beach, Florida, where she worked for both the ABC and NBC affiliates. In November 1956, Mary represented WEAT as guest of President Batista of Cuba at the Radio Announcer's Day celebration in Havana, Cuba. As president of the Radio Club in Clark College in Dubuque, Iowa, her experience included a stint with WGN as Traffic Manager, as well as secretary to the Program Director in Chicago.

Later in her career, which included raising seven children, Mary served as the Coordinator of the Rosarian Academy Golden Anniversary Ball, a member of the Development and Advisory Council, and President of the Rosarian Academy Home Association. She also sold real estate for Perini Land and Development Company and served as a confidential private secretary to prominent Palm Beach families.

Mary married Daniel Joseph O'Connell in 1948. Dan was a radio-operator gunner in the 100th Bomb Group of the 8th Army Air Corps, who had served in the June 6, 1944 D-Day invasion of Normandy during World War II. Mary is preceded in death by her husband, Daniel Joseph O'Connell and a son, John Joseph O'Connell.

Mary is survived by six of her seven children, Margaret Mary Tuma of Pekin, Indiana, Daniel Joseph (Cindy) O'Connell of Boca Raton, Florida, Maureen Ann (Don) Walker of Owings, Maryland, Eileen Marie (Anthony) Unitas of Baltimore, Maryland, Patrick Joseph O'Connell of Naples, Florida and Catherine Marie (Paul) Duke of Houston, Texas. Mary is also survived by 18 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be from 2-4 on Saturday, December 7, 2019 at Kraft Funeral Service, 708 East Spring Street, New Albany Indiana, 47150 followed by a funeral service at 4:00 pm.

She will be buried next to her husband on Tuesday, December 31, 2019 at 10:00 am in Woodlawn Cemetery in West Palm Beach, Florida under the direction of Quattlebaum Funeral Center in West Palm Beach.

Expressions of sympathy are suggested to St. Jude Children's Hospital.

Services

  • Visitation Saturday, December 7, 2019
  • Funeral Service Saturday, December 7, 2019

Memories

Mary Therese Chidester O'Connell

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Biography

Mary Therese Chidester O'Connell, 92, passed away on December 1, 2019 in Salem, Indiana. Mary was a pioneer in broadcasting in the early 1950's in West Palm Beach, Florida, where she worked for both the ABC and NBC affiliates. In November 1956, Mary represented WEAT as guest of President Batista of Cuba at the Radio Announcer's Day celebration in Havana, Cuba. As president of the Radio Club in Clark College in Dubuque, Iowa, her experience included a stint with WGN as Traffic Manager, as well as secretary to the Program Director in Chicago.

Later in her career, which included raising seven children, Mary served as the Coordinator of the Rosarian Academy Golden Anniversary Ball, a member of the Development and Advisory Council, and President of the Rosarian Academy Home Association. She also sold real estate for Perini Land and Development Company and served as a confidential private secretary to prominent Palm Beach families.

Mary married Daniel Joseph O'Connell in 1948. Dan was a radio-operator gunner in the 100th Bomb Group of the 8th Army Air Corps, who had served in the June 6, 1944 D-Day invasion of Normandy during World War II. Mary is preceded in death by her husband, Daniel Joseph O'Connell and a son, John Joseph O'Connell.

Mary is survived by six of her seven children, Margaret Mary Tuma of Pekin, Indiana, Daniel Joseph (Cindy) O'Connell of Boca Raton, Florida, Maureen Ann (Don) Walker of Owings, Maryland, Eileen Marie (Anthony) Unitas of Baltimore, Maryland, Patrick Joseph O'Connell of Naples, Florida and Catherine Marie (Paul) Duke of Houston, Texas. Mary is also survived by 18 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be from 2-4 on Saturday, December 7, 2019 at Kraft Funeral Service, 708 East Spring Street, New Albany Indiana, 47150 followed by a funeral service at 4:00 pm.

She will be buried next to her husband on Tuesday, December 31, 2019 at 10:00 am in Woodlawn Cemetery in West Palm Beach, Florida under the direction of Quattlebaum Funeral Center in West Palm Beach.

Expressions of sympathy are suggested to St. Jude Children's Hospital