Irene Barbara (Paddy, Pat, Irish) Madonna, 94, passed away on June 22, 2020, at her home in Louisville, Colorado. She was a war bride, homemaker, mother, an avid gardener, and loved her daily walks around Louisville. She was born in England in 1925, the daughter of Clara May and William James Denning, a Distinguished World War I Veteran. She was immensely proud of her family, who all contributed their respective efforts during WWII. Irene's duties during the war included riding a motorcycle to relay dispatches, driving an ambulance for the injured, attending the wounded in the hospitals, and spending nights spotting incoming enemy planes. In addition, she was also an avid swimmer and horse rider. She was preceded in death by her parents, three sisters Lilian, Kathleen, Dorothy, and her brother James. James was also a Distinguished Veteran of WWII, who fought in the African campaign, Anzio Beach, the battle of Dunkirk, and was one of only two British soldiers who were able to walk out of Arnhem on their own, and then again D-Day. Irene "Paddy" met her future husband, Anthony Joseph "Joe" Madonna, who was a sergeant in the US Army, Corps of Engineers while he was stationed in England. After his return from France at the end of the war, they married in 1945. Joe Madonna was a native son of Louisville. Upon discharge Joe returned home; and Irene was then ferried to the United States aboard the battleship USS Washington. She arrived in New York and was placed into a hotel until she was allowed to travel to Louisville by train. A challenging experience for a twenty-year-old young lady. Together they built their own home in Louisville and raised four sons: Daniel, Victor, Michael and Gordon. Irene was preceded in death by her husband, Joe and her eldest son Daniel, who was a Purple Heart recipient wounded in Vietnam, and succumbed to complications from his injuries. Irene is survived by three sons; Victor (Nancy) Madonna of Longmont (Victor is a decorated soldier who fought in Vietnam as well.), Michael (Carmen) Madonna of Palm Springs, CA, Gordon (Gail) Madonna of Louisville, three grandchildren, Mark Madonna, Louisville, Kristine (Derek) Madonna, Thornton, and Josh (Karina) Madonna, three great grandchildren, Giovanni, Roman and Maximus all of Beaumont, California. Funeral Services will be held at St. Louis Catholic Church in Louisville on Monday, June 29th, 2020. Visitation will be at 9:00 and mass at 10:00 a.m. Interment will follow at the Sacred Heart of Mary Cemetery on South Boulder Road. A reception will be held after services at the ELKS Lodge, 525 Main Street, Louisville, at 12:00 pm.
Published in Colorado Hometown Weekly on Jun. 28, 2020.