Catherine Theresa (Demasi) McKearney of Lunenburg, Vt., passed away on Friday, Jan. 11, 2019. She died suddenly at her home after a suspected heart attack at the age of 87.
She was born in Northfield, Vt., on June 13, 1931, the daughter of Joseph and Mary (Grace) Demasi. She married Roland Wayne McKearney of East Concord, Vt., on Nov. 14, 1953. Catherine met Roland while visiting her brother Michael who was posted in Gilman, Vt., as a priest.
The McKearneys raised a large family while living in Lunenburg in a house that they built next to the Catholic church. They moved to a permanent residence on Neal Pond, Vt., in the early 2000s after spending summers there for several years. Catherine loved her years spent on Neal Pond where she enjoyed gardening, swimming, kayaking, hosting family members, playing her organ, feeding the birds, and companionship from her cat Holly. She took pride in maintaining her home in her 80s, with help from her children and grandchildren. Her family would visit her to share meals, build camp fires, talk, laugh, and watch movies.
Catherine was a skilled quilter. She exhibited her quilts and attended weekly quilting groups with a supportive group of women from Essex and Coos counties. She made many quilts for friends and family members. She made quilts with blank squares that family members would embellish and sign in pen to commemorate family gatherings.
Before her retirement, Catherine worked as a cosmetologist, a paraprofessional educator, and a switchboard operator. She attended the Vermont College of Cosmetology and worked out of a studio in her home as a self-employed cosmetologist. She also worked in the Gilman School as a paraprofessional educator and as a switchboard operator in Northfield and Gilman Vermont.
Catherine is survived by four children, five grandchildren, a sister, and many nieces and nephews. Her surviving children are Valerie (McKearney) MacAskill and her husband Stephen of Bristol, Conn.; Kevin McKearney of Lunenburg, Vt., Charlene (McKearney) Zabek and her husband Tom of St. Johnsbury, Vt.; and Brian McKearney and his wife Tracy of Londonderry, N.H. The five grandchildren are Mike Zabek and his fiancée Jessica Ott of Washington, D.C.; Sarah (Zabek) Stigliano and her husband Matt of Medford, Mass.; Rachel MacAskill of New York, N.Y.; Noah McKearney of Londonderry, N.H.; and Jason McKearney of Londonderry, N.H. Her sister Barbara (Demasi) Bresnahan and her husband John live in Yorktown, Va.
She was preceded by her husband Roland McKearney; her daughter Patricia McKearney; her grandson Benjamin MacAskill; and her siblings Philomena (Nena) Demasi, Fr. Andrew (Andy) Demasi, Fr. Michael (Mike) Demasi, Donetta (Tada) (Demasi) Saccone, James Demasi, Maria (Demasi) Henderson, and Pascal (Joe) Demasi.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at All Saints Catholic Church in Lancaster, N.H., at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 16. Reverend Karl Hahr, pastor of the Corpus Christi Parish, will officiate. The burial will be held immediately after at Saint Rose of Lima New Catholic Cemetery in Littleton, N.H. The family invites everyone to join them for a light lunch at the church after the burial. Visiting hours will be at Bailey Funeral Home in Lancaster, N.H., from 4 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 15.
In lieu of flowers please make a memorial donation to a charity of one’s choice. Please go to www.baileyfh.net for more information or to send an online condolence