Mary (nee Beale) McGann, who passed away on 29 June, was born in St Albans, England, in November 1940, amidst the London Blitz. She and her twin sister, Myra, grew up in Cambridgeshire, where her father was a vicar in a small village outside Ely. She and Myra attended The Mount, a Quaker boarding school for girls in York, on scholarship. In her teens, she and her family moved to London, where her father took a post in the East End while Mary attended nursing school at Westminster Children’s Hospital. It was there, in March 1960, that she met Rob McGann, a young doctor; the couple quickly fell in love and were engaged in a matter of weeks and married within months.
The newly married couple soon moved to Singapore while Rob did his national service as a doctor in the Royal Navy. It was a happy two-and-a-half years for them and when they returned to the UK in 1963, with their first son, Robert, on the way, they settled in Hampshire, where Rob worked as a general practitioner. Their second son, Charles, arrived in 1965. The following year the family emigrated to the US, stopping first in Maine before settling in Meriden, Connecticut. There, their third child, Harriet, was born.
A capable and energetic woman, Mary contributed much to the communities in which she lived. She was president of the Meriden Symphony Society, sang with the Meriden Community Chorus, was a member of Meriden’s Thursday Morning Club, sat on the board of the Martin Luther King Scholarship Fund and volunteered at the Meriden Wallingford Hospital. A voracious reader, Mary contributed to the success of the local library in Sea Trail Plantation after Rob and Mary relocated to Sunset Beach, North Carolina in the 1990s.
Amidst all her community activities, wherever she was, Mary was an engaging neighbour, enthusiastic host, fantastic cook and robust friend to many. To the family she leaves behind, she was a loving wife and mother, whose boundless love, generous spirit and unshakeable confidence in her children gave them the strongest of foundations.
She leaves behind her loving husband of 60 years, Robert; her three children, Robert, Charles and Harriet; their wives and partners, Anne McGann, Barbry McGann and David Jones; and grandchildren, Nathaniel McGann, Abigail Parsons, Declan McGann and Kaela McGann.
A Celebration of her life will be held at a later date.
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