Age 77, of Grand Rapids, MN Died September 7, 2012 After a long battle with cancer. Born in Kansas City, MO, in 1935, she was preceded in death by her parents John C. Brackett and Mary Symons Brackett and stepmother Mary Lou Hoff. Survived by her husband Charles P. (Todd) Driscoll; children Melissa A. (Jay Hambridge) Driscoll, Julia C. (Claudio) Garrido, Robert Pedro (Bobbi) Driscoll, and John A. Driscoll; siblings Thomas C. (Margo) Brackett, Barbara Hoff Crane, Tony (Susan) Hoff, and Ann Elizabeth Brackett: grandchildren Brandon Driscoll, Kala and Sulema Garrido, Dominic and Amaya Driscoll, and numerous cousins, nephews and nieces. Cynthia moved with her family to St. Paul in 1947. She attended Summit School and Smith College. Her summers in her early teens were dominated by competitive sailing on Lake Minnetonka, where she won many awards in the X class. After college she worked in Boston, then for the US Army in recreational services in Germany, and the U of M St. Paul Campus. She married Charles (Todd) Dricoll in 1962. She and Todd soon moved to Afton and restored an 1870's farmhouse, where they spent 20 years raising their family. Cynthia, Todd and family subsequently mved to Grand Rapids in 1982 when he joined the Blandin Foundation staff. Cynthia will be remembered as a person who got things done, whether in public service, writing, gardening or serving on not-for-profit boards. Cynthia was a member of the first Master Gardener class offered by the U of M. She published over 100 articles in national magazines and wrote one book, "One Woman's Gold Rush," about her relative Mary Montgomery Brackett in the Alaskan Gold Rush of 1887. Cynthia served on the school board, District 834, in Washington County, Started the Farmer's Market in Afton, MN, served on the North Central Experiment Station Advisory Committee, helped plan and support the new Grand Rapids Area Library (2000), started the Young Writers Fair in Grand Rapids, member and board chair of Advocates for Family Peace, Active member of the Book Wolves book club, helped plan and monitor the building of the family's home home in Grand Rapids and cabin on Blue Heron Island, Lake Vermillion. Cynthia will be missed by her family and friends. No flowers please. Memorials are preferred to the North Central Experiment Station Horticultural Research Fund, the Grand Rapids Area Library, YMCA Camp Widjiwagan or causes of the donor's choice fostering peace and understanding. A memorial service will be held Oct. 19 at 1PM at St. John the Evangelist, 60 Kent St., St. Paul.
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Published in Pioneer Press on Sept. 16, 2012