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Mary Keefe

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Mary Keefe Obituary
Mary Doyle Keefe

SIMSBURY, CONN. Mary Doyle Keefe, 92, fondly known to many as "Rosie the Riveter," of Simsbury, CT passed away peacefully on April 21, 2015. Mrs. Keefe was predeceased by her husband of 55 years, Robert J. Keefe, Sr.; parents, Sarah and John Doyle of Arlington, VT; brother, Edward Doyle; and sister, Frances Doyle Mooney. Born in Bennington, VT, Mary was a proud resident of Arlington, VT. After graduating from Arlington High School, she attended Temple University, graduating with a dental hygiene degree. Mary was a dental hygienist in Bennington when she met Robert J. Keefe, whom she married in June 1949. As a young woman, while working as a telephone operator out of her mother's home in Arlington, Mary was asked by West Arlington resident and artist Norman Rockwell to model for a painting as a hard-working airplane riveter, with a riveting gun in her lap and one foot firmly on a copy of Mein Kampf. She received $10.00 in compensation and much appreciation and acclaim over the years. The work appeared on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post on May 29, 1943, and "Rosie the Riveter" soon became a nationally known icon of American resolve for women assisting in the war effort during World War II. Mary will be remembered as a loving, patient, and generous wife, mother, and grandmother, watching with great delight as her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren grew and prospered. She is survived by her four children, William J. Keefe (Elizabeth) of Reston, VA; Barbara K. Boska (William) of Sparta, NJ; Robert J. Keefe, Jr. (Carol) of Woodbury, MN; and Mary Ellen Keefe (Keith Bombard) of East Granby, CT, 11 grandchildren, and five great children, as well as Shelly Jackson, her dear friend and care companion. Her family will receive friends, Friday, April 24th from 1- 2 PM followed by a Memorial Mass at the Carling Chapel at McLean Village, 75 Great Pond Road, Simsbury, CT. A reception will follow. A graveside service will be Saturday, April 25th, at 11 am at Park Lawn Cemetery, Bennington, VT. In lieu of flowers, donations in Mary's memory may be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation at www.JDRF.org. Hayes-Huling & Carmon Funeral Home of Granby is caring for the arrangements. For directions or condolences visit www.carmonfuneralhome.com.
Published in Bennington Banner on Apr. 23, 2015
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