Colleen McDermott Connolly
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Colleen McDermott Connolly
  • June 2, 1933 - July 11, 2017
  • Kinston, North Carolina

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Colleen McDermott Connolly, 84, died on Tuesday, July 11, 2017, in Kinston, North Carolina. She was preceded in death by her parents, Stanley McDermott and Miriam Lee McDermott; her brother, Stanley McDermott, Jr.; her brother-in-law Donald Miller; her son, James Patrick Connolly, and her former husband Robert Lawrence Connolly. She is survived by her children, Mary Connolly (John) Leighton and Robert Lawrence Connolly, Jr.; her grandchildren, Janet Leighton, John Michael Leighton, and Owen Connolly; her sister Miriam McDermott Miller; her sister-in-law Elizabeth Nairne McDermott; her cousin Maureen McDermott Howat; and many beloved cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends.



Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, Colleen had a lifelong love of education. She graduated from Sacred Heart High School in 1950, and later received a Bachelor of Arts Degree and a Master’s Degree in Administration-Supervision and Guidance from Ursuline College and a Master’s of Education from Loyola University. She was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma International Honor Society.



A lifelong educator, Colleen loved guiding and teaching children. She worked for the Orleans Parish public schools and later she served as principal of St. Pius X Catholic School in Lake Vista and St. Joseph School in Gretna, Louisiana, and as a Special Education teacher in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. After surviving Hurricane Katrina in 2005, she left her beloved New Orleans and moved to Kinston, North Carolina, to be closer to her daughter and her family. There she concluded her professional career of over forty years as a Special Education teacher in Lenoir County, North Carolina.



Colleen touched the lives of many in her family serving as a loving mother, aunt, great-aunt, and grandmother. Her heart overflowed with joy as her family grew and its members thrived. She celebrated the strengths and successes of everyone. She maintained the role as the family historian preserving pictures, diplomas, newspaper articles and other documents, as well as the official family tree. Generous in her deeds and words for people and causes close to her, Colleen volunteered support to many throughout her life. She will be deeply missed by everyone with the good fortune to have loved and have been loved by her.



Relatives and friends of the family are invited to attend a memorial service at Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home at 5100 Pontchartrain Boulevard, on Saturday Morning, July 29, 2017, at 11:00 a.m. Visitation will begin at 10:00 a.m. Interment will follow at Lake Lawn Metairie Cemetery, New Orleans.



To view and sign the family guestbook, please visit www.lakelawnmetairie.com .