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304 Merrimon Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801
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Rachel McCaffrey Gordon

1920 - 2013 Obituary Condolences
Rachel McCaffrey Gordon Obituary
Rachel McCaffrey Gordon

Asheville - Rachel McCaffrey Gordon died at her home in Asheville, North Carolina on Oct 21, 2013. She was 92.

Rachel was born in Peru, Indiana on December 7, 1920 to the late Kate Cole McCaffrey and Florence Aloysius "Mac" McCaffrey of Peru, Indiana. Her maternal grandparents were Louis A. Cole of Brandy City, California and Peru, Indiana and Mary Ellen "Madole" Lawton Cole of Cincinnati, Ohio. Her paternal grandparents were Hugh McCaffrey of County Armagh, Ireland and Caroline "Carrie" Sullivan of Indiana.

She moved to Asheville in 1924 with her mother Kate Cole McCaffrey and two sisters, Mary Ellen McCaffrey and Florence "Toney" McCaffrey. Rachel grew up in Asheville attending: St. Genevieve of the Pines, St. Genevieve High School (Class of 1932-1936), and St. Genevieve Junior College (Class of 1940). She then worked briefly for the Veterans Administration in Swannanoa, N.C.

During World War II (1942-1945) Rachel worked for senior officers at the U.S. central spy agency, at that time called the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) in Washington, D.C. The OSS became the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in 1947. She also participated, as a transcriptionist, in a number of meetings between the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the OSS during WW II at the Pentagon and at the presidential retreat, now known as Camp David, called "Shangri-La" by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt during WW II.

Rachel married Donald Winfred Bradley of Putnam, CT, a lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps, in 1945 and has a son, Michael Stowe Bradley, Sr. of Johnson City, Tennessee who survives her. Michael, Sr. is married to Virginia Durham Bradley and they have three sons: Michael Stowe Bradley, Jr., in Saint Louis, Missouri, Dr. John Lawton Bradley married to Rebecca Siegel Bradley in Nashville, Tennessee with a son Paul Albert Bradley; and Dr. Patrick Durham Bradley married to Alexandria Mitchell Bradley in Temple, Texas with a son Elijah James Bradley and daughter June Elizabeth Bradley. Michael Stowe Bradley, Sr. has a brother, Ransom Kellogg Bradley of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

Rachel married Stewart Douglas Easterby of Hendersonville, North Carolina in 1951 and has a son Samuel Cole Easterby of Atlanta, Georgia who also survives her. Sam is married to Margaret Alison Easterby. Sam has three children and two step-children: Anna-Katherine Cole Easterby in Atlanta, Georgia; Margaret Asher Easterby in Durango, Colorado; Matthew Cole Easterby in Minnesota; Heather Victoria Valentine and Griffin Alexander Valentine both from Atlanta, GA.

Rachel married Seth Edwin Gordon, Jr. of Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania in 1959 and has three step-daughters who survive her: Sandra Gordon Bush and her husband Charles of Columbia, South Carolina, Patricia Gordon Allen and her husband Sam of Charlotte, North Carolina, and Barbara Gordon Bell of Austin, Texas.

Late in life, Rachel married a brother-in-law, James Burgin ("Pete") Little of Charlotte, North Carolina in 1988. She has two step-children from that marriage who survive her: Donald Little and Louise Little.

In addition to her two sons and five step-children, Rachel is also survived by a half-brother Peter Anthony "Tony" McCaffrey and his wife Cathleen O'Neil of Las Vegas, Nevada.

Rachel is also survived by one niece Ellen Cole Lewis Vaughan of Berkley, California and seven nephews: David Anthony Lewis Falls Church, Virginia; Peter Lawton Little and his wife Cyndy of Greensboro; William Crowell Little and his wife Amy of Troutville, Virginia; James Hartwell Little and his wife Yao of Chon Buri, Thailand; and Anthony Whiting Little and his wife Linda Brannon of Benson, North Carolina.

Rachel spent several years in the 1950's working for the St. Joseph's Hospital Guild. Rachel also worked as a therapeutic art counselor at Highland Hospital in the 1960's and then at Three Mountaineers in Biltmore as Office Manager and Credit Manager from 1965 through 1978. Rachel retired from three Mountaineers in 1978.

Rachel loved to tend to her gardens and greenhouse at her home with the help of Louis Stokley of Asheville, NC who worked for Rachel and Rachel's family for almost 40 years.

Rachel also loved to work and play "On-line Bridge" on her computer until she was 89. Rachel and her two sisters Mary Ellen McCaffrey Little and Florence Anthony "Toney" McCaffrey Lewis were all artists. Rachel was also an accomplished gourmet cook. She had travelled extensively in Europe and the Mediterranean with her family.

Rachel's family would like to extend their thanks to all of Rachel's caregivers who helped her during the past three years. Special thanks go out to Sharon Meyers, Debbie Sharp and all of the other caregivers. The family would also like to thank the Eucharistic Ministers from the Basilica of St. Lawrence, who visited Rachel every week for the past three years.

Rachel was of the Roman Catholic faith and had been a parishioner of the Basilica of St. Lawrence in Asheville since the age of four in 1924.

A rosary will be held at Morris Funeral Home, 304 Merrimon Avenue, 5:30 PM, Thursday, Oct 24th, with the family receiving friends immediately following. A Requiem Mass will be held for Rachel on Friday, Oct 25th at 3:00 PM at the Basilica of St. Lawrence, 97 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC 28801. Rev. C. Morris Boyd, D. Min. Parochial Vicar of the Basilica of St. Lawrence will say the Requiem Mass and preside at the graveside service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Eliada Homes, Inc., PO Box 16708, Asheville, NC 28816.

Immediately following the Requiem Mass, Rachel will be buried in Riverside Cemetery, 53 Birch Street, Asheville, NC 28801, next to her mother Kate Cole McCaffrey, her sisters and their spouses: Mary Ellen McCaffrey Little, Florence Anthony "Toney" McCaffrey Lewis, Ralph Little, and James Burgin "Pete" Little.

Morris Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be sent through the website


Published in the Asheville Citizen-Times from Oct. 23 to Oct. 25, 2013
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