Mary  A.  Powell

Obituary for Mary A. Powell

August 18, 1925 - June 2, 2022
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania | Age 96


Mary A Powell (nee Delargey) of St. Jerome's Parish in Northeast Philadelphia passed away, peacefully, in her sleep early Thursday morning. She would have turned 97 in August.

Mary is survived by her sister, Elizabeth Curley and six children: Hon. Judge Kenneth J (Rita), Dennis (Lisa), Pat (Linda), Noreen (Joe McCall), Marianne (John Kline) and Brian (Sandy). She is also survived by 11 grandchildren: Brendan McCall, Lynsey Rider, Patrick Powell, Lauren Resnick, Laura Pinto, Colin Pinto, Sarae Pinto, Hanora Rogers, Kenneth (Kip) Powell, III, Alec Powell, Georgia Powell, and 16 great-grandchildren.

Mary was one of four children born to Patrick Delargey and Hanora McCarthy who were both Irish immigrants. Patrick came from County Antrim in the north and Hanora from County Limerick in the south. Hanora was from a large family who all settled in the Grays Ferry section of south Philadelphia.

Mary was born in 1925. She was the third of four children: Jack, Nora, Mary and Betty. As a child, Mary had 36 first cousins living within a few blocks of her home. Her father passed of sudden illness in 1932. His passing shaped her life in major ways. It was the middle of the Great Depression that would be followed by World War II. Mary embraced her strong faith in God and her belief in family to move forward. Her brother Jack and sister Nora took on responsibilities beyond their years after the passing of their father.

Mary attended St Anthony's Parish School and Hallahan Catholic High School. In her senior year, Mary was drafted to serve her country during World War II because she knew stenography. She worked at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, but returned to school only to graduate with her class in 1943. In 1947, she married Kenneth James Powell. They settled in St. Gabriel's parish in Grays Ferry. They would have seven children and raise six. Mary, her second daughter, would die shortly after birth due to complications. Her children all attended St. Gabriel's School. Her husband, Kenny, worked most of his career as a police officer in Philadelphia.

Mary dedicated her life to her family. Her eldest son, Ken is a Judge; Dennis is an author, Pat was a global sales executive with Xerox, Noreen was a technology consultant, Marianne a nurse and Brian is an entrepreneur who started and built five businesses. Mary's husband Ken died in 1987 of sudden illness. She lived as a widow in her home for the past 35 years devoted to her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

The core values Mary possessed in life were an unyielding faith in God and family; hope that she could raise successful and happy children and love for everyone who touched her life. She was a Mom to many. This was evidenced clearly in the many lifelong friendships she cultivated.

The hardships in her youth instilled enduring character in Mary. Despite losing her father and husband to death at young ages, Mary maintained incredible optimism throughout her life. She also retained an admirable lust for life and cherished the little things that most people simply overlook. She lived a life dedicated to her family, to positivity, to justice, to kindness, to sincerity, to laughter, and to fairness. Asked recently what she found most amazing over the past 96 years, she said, "That's easy: the Internet and Facebook!" She never stopped learning and growing.

Mary was a beautiful, funny and a fierce survivor! Her humor and warmth were legendary! She left us on June 2nd, just a few months shy of her 97th birthday, surrounded by her children and grandchildren at Pennsylvania Hospital. The room was full of tears, which soon turned to joyous laughter and good cheer…and Mary loved every moment of it! Perhaps we were a bit loud for a hospital room, but Mary reveled in her family laughing and enjoying one another. It was what Mom loved the most. All of us being together made this a PERFECT last day for Mom.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the PA FOP Foundation in Mary's name.

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John F. Givnish Funeral Home

10975 Academy Road
Philadelphia, PA 19154
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