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Catherine (Bray) Monahan

July 8, 1925 April 30, 2016
Catherine (Bray) Monahan
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Obituary for Catherine (Bray) Monahan

Catherine Anne Bray Monahan died at the age of 90 in Shelton, Connecticut on April 30, 2016. She was the youngest of three children born July 8, 1925 in Norwich, Connecticut to Mary Reardon Bray and Patrick Francis Bray, and was a 53 year resident of Stratford, Connecticut.

Catherine's life was forever framed by carefree childhood summers spent on Block Island, the Great Depression, and the sacrifices of WWII. A 1943 graduate of Norwich Free Academy, she received a secretarial degree from Bryant College in 1944 and initially worked as a secretary. Yearning for a college education and with money tight, she worked herself through the University of Connecticut in three years graduating with a B.A. with high honors in 1953. A lifelong learner, she received her Masters of Science in Education from Southern Connecticut State University in 1979. Known as Kate or Katie, she married her husband Andrew in 1955, after being introduced at the University of Connecticut by her future sister-in-law Jean. Kate worked as a social worker at St. Vincent's Hospital, and as her children grew, she returned to work for her husband's company (O.B. Maxwell) and then spent many years at CitiTrust.

A perfect size 8 her entire life, Kate's fierce independence, determination and strength belied her petitness. She was taught by her husband to ski and they in turn introduced their children to skiing throughout New England. She was not nearly as enthusiastic a fly fisherman as her husband. She was a fifteen year summer resident of her beloved Cape Cod (Brewster) where she enjoyed biking, swimming, and golfing with Andrew. A wanderlust at heart, she encouraged their travel all over the world including a cruise to Alaska, and trips to Mexico, Canada, England, Ireland, Scotland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Egypt, Greece and Turkey. She visited Spain, Portugal, and Morocco, and after Andrew's death in 2002 traveled to Italy, Belgium, The Netherlands, Scandinavia, Estonia and Russia. When her three children scattered to the winds, she took special joy in visiting and traveling with her grandchildren to Vermont, Block Island, Florida, the Finger Lakes, Virginia's horse country, and the Maine coast. She could put away a lobster dinner or a "good hamburger" like nobody else. A talented floral arranger, she was also an avid reader and music lover. She spent hours gardening at her Stratford home of forty years which her husband designed. She was a member of the American Association of University Women, Stratford Garden Club, St. Mark's Ladies Guild, and a Bridgeport Hospital volunteer.

Kate never demanded of her children, and was appreciative of every visit they made to her. Filled with faith and the belief that tomorrow will dawn brighter, Kate was grateful for everything she had. She instilled in family her values of tenacity, hard work, saving for a rainy day, love of country, and importance of higher education. Kate was a force of nature, a dear friend, a beloved grandmother and possessed a heart full of abiding kindness towards others. She will be missed beyond words.

She was predeceased by her parents, her beloved husband Andrew, her sister Mary Bray Ryan, and her adored brother Dr. Patrick Francis Bray. Kate is survived by her three children: daughter Anne and husband John Griffiths of Sterling, VA; daughter Maureen and husband Kevin Roach of Katonah, NY; and son Mark and wife Patricia of Norwich, VT. She is also survived by five grandchildren: Christopher and Matthew of Virginia; and Harrison, Bridget and Avery of Vermont, as well as several nieces and nephews.

The family is especially grateful for those who provided such tender care to her these last couple of years, and especially the Wesley Heights Lifestyle Transitions Unit where she resided the last six months of her life. Interment will be private and a celebration of her life will be held on Saturday, June 11th at 11:00 am at St. Mark's Church, 500 Wigwam Lane, Stratford, CT 06614. A scholarship has been established in her name at Norwich Free Academy Foundation Inc. Memorial contributions can be sent in her memory to: NFA Foundation, 321 Broadway
Norwich, CT 06360

For additional information or to share a message of condolence, visit www.wrmcdonaldfuneralhome.com.

To plant a tree in memory of Catherine (Bray) Monahan, visit the Tribute Store.

Previous Events

Memorial Service

Saturday

11

Jun

11:00 AM 6/11/2016 11:00:00 AM
Saint Mark Church,

500 Wigwam Lane
Stratford, CT 06614

Burial and Funeral Services were held privately in Gate of Heaven Cemetery.

Saint Mark Church,
500 Wigwam Lane Stratford 06614 CT
United States

Memorial Contribution

Norwich Free Academy Foundation Inc.

321 Broadway
Norwich, CT 06360
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