Mary Alice Nelson (1948 - 2017)

Obituary
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  • "I was saddened to read about your Mothers passing. She was..."
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Mary Alice Nelson, born March 22, 1948 in Pittston, to Dr. William Francis Connell and Catherine ("Kitty") Harrigan Connell, passed away peacefully in her sleep on Monday, Aug. 7, 2017.

It was just as she would have wanted, no fuss and no fear. Mary Alice was quite a woman. She loved her family deeply and was generous to a fault. Mary Alice had an ability to befriend strangers, somehow learning their life stories in mere minutes. It was a trait her children loved and admired (and if we're honest also found exasperating). She was known as the consummate hostess and an incredible cook, a lover of gardens and of her Irish heritage. If you needed help with decorating or wanted to know the perfect flowers for your garden, she was the person you turned to. Mary Alice was the backbone of her family and the hidden force behind the family business' inception and growth. As children, she instilled in us a sense of right and wrong and encouraged us to achieve. She had little patience for wasting your talents. Mary Alice also taught us to love antiquing and craft fairs and made sure we knew how to haggle.

Mary Alice was very proud of her family. But as loving as she was, she was never the person to tell you what you wanted to hear. Sugar coating was not her style. You could count on her to give it to you straight. She never lacked an opinion, nor did she hesitate to share it. Of course, if she gave you a compliment (and she often did), you knew she meant that too. Praise from Mary Alice was high praise indeed.

She lived to celebrate the birth of her seventh grandchild, Harrigan Oisín Nelson, just a few weeks ago and for that we are deeply grateful. Mary Alice is survived by her children, Kate Nelson Alderman, Margaret Neville, Caroline Nelson and Daniel Kevin Nelson, sons-in-law, Terence Neville and David Alderman; and her grandchildren, Kit, Fiona, Lizzie, Brendan, Declan, Aoife and Harrigan.

Friends, family and others whose lives Mary Alice touched are invited to her Memorial Mass in the Church of St. John the Evangelist, 35 William St., Pittston, at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, with the Rev. Ryan Maher, S.J. presiding.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. John the Evangelist Care & Concern Pediatric Clinic, 37 William St., Pittston, PA 18640.

Memories and condolences may be shared with Mary Alice's family at www.celebrateherlife.com.
Funeral Home
McLaughlin's - The Family Funeral Service
142 South Washington Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18701
(570) 823-4567
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Published in Citizens' Voice on Aug. 13, 2017
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