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26 Sept 2022

The late Kay O’Driscoll (nee Donaghey), USA / Kilnagross, Co Leitrim

Deaths in Dundalk - Thursday 10 February 2022

Kathleen Margaret “Kay” Donaghey Mulligan O'Driscoll was a caring wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and friend. She left this world suddenly, surrounded by family and content on July 31, 2022 in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA.

She was born November 8, 1938 in Kilnagross (Coill na gCros), Co Leitrim to John and Mary (Burns) Donaghey.

The late Kay O'Driscoll (nee Donaghey).

She is survived by husband Michael O'Driscoll of Myrtle Beach, SC and Worcester, MA, her son Richard J. Mulligan of Boston, MA, son and daughter-in-law Neil and Mary Mulligan of Southington, CT, and her favourite hellos and hardest goodbyes - granddaughters Caitlin and Keira Mulligan of Southington, CT. She was predeceased by first husband Richard F. Mulligan.

She also leaves her sister and confidante May McNulty of Drumshanbo, Co Leitrim and numerous nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews. She was predeceased by sister Annie Beirne and brother John James Donaghey both of Co Leitrim.

She graduated from the Keshcarrigan Vocational School, and would tell us story after story about the cast of characters from neighbours to relations, including a cat named Richard, in Leitrim.

Along with her sister, May, she emigrated to the US in 1955, to “see what all the fuss was about,” eventually settling in Waterbury, Connecticut, where she adored the Beatles and twice met eventual president Ronald Reagan at a lunch counter.

She met my father, Richard F. Mulligan at an Irish-American Club dinner dance and the two were married in 1965.

Shortly after, they moved to neighbouring Wolcott, where they raised two boys, and where she volunteered for the Cub Scouts, American Cancer Society, and the Wolcott Democratic Town Committee among others.

She worked for many years in dietary for Wolcott Public Schools and later Southbury Training School until she and Richard retired to Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and lived there for over a decade until her husbands’ passing.

She married Michael O'Driscoll, a long-time family friend and genuinely upright man, in the fall of 2012 and the two settled in Myrtle Beach, SC, where they enjoyed golf outings, hosting numerous family visits, and starting a Southern US Chapter of the Rose of Tralee. Mike and the O'Driscolls welcomed me and my brother to the family at the awkward and impressionable ages of 43 and 45.

An eternal optimist, and as determined as she was compassionate, she had a wicked sense of humour and a big heart. You've never heard anything more joyous and life-affirming than her laughing with friends in Connecticut, or with her sisters in Ireland.

She would stop at nothing to make those around her feel comfortable and welcome and was always the first one up and the last to go to bed, but not before reading the newspaper, interrupting The Six Million Dollar Man with “you know who died?” and counting her blessings with a “thanks be to God” before falling asleep on her chair.

A Requiem Mass will be held in the fall followed by final disposition at Royal Palm Memorial Gardens in Palm Beach, Florida.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the St Jude Children's Research Hospital at stjude.org

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