||Death of Mrs. Edward Fay
Close of a Long and Eventful Life
Another Pioneer Gone
It becomes our melancholy duty to chronicle the death of Mrs. Ed. Fay, which occurred at her home in Cass township on Monday, 8th instant. Though failing in her health for some time, her last sickness was of short duration. An abscess forming in her ear developped into inflammation of the brain, which was the ultimate cause of death. All that medical skill and tender nursing could do was willingly done for her, but the fiat of death---cruel death---mocked the efforts of human power, and eventually called her to sleep the sleep from which there is no waking. She was perfectly aware of the approaching end. She retained full consciousness to the last. Fortified by all the consolations of religion, surrounded by dear ones, dear as heart, grateful to a merciful Lord who had prolonged her days so far, calmly, willingly, piously awaiting the final call, comforting her comforters, sympathising in their sorrow, realizing the weight of grief which her departure would eventually cause, she at last resignedly commended her spirit into the hands of her Creator, and closed her eyes to this world of mortality, to open them, as we trust, in the assembly of "the just made perfect" in the vision of the face of God.
Margaret Mulconnery was born in Ireland on the 31st of September, 1830, the third of six children. The death of father and mother left them orphans at a very early age. Deprived of parents' protecting hand, almost in their infancey, the children clung the more unitedly together, in increasing affection, until death's icy grasp tore asunder. They emigrated to this country in young years; and like brave pioneers, turned their faces to the growing west. Because they were active, ambitious, industrious and honest, they all rose to positions of independence and comfort. Maurice Mulconnery, the eldest of the family, was long a roadmaster of the CM & St.P. RR. The old residents will remember him. He was one of Nature's noblemen. It was an honor to know him. No one ever stood higher in the estimation of employers and [illegible] Another brother was for many years employed as a railroad engineer, and lately retired from active work to enjoy at once the evening of a well spent life. He came here from Belleville, Ill. to attend his sister's funeral.
In the year 1856 she was united in mariage to Edward Fay, in St. James' church, Chicago. By a singular, and most remarkable coincidence, she died on the same day of the year, almost at the same hour, on which she was married---on the 8th of February at 10 o'clock. After two score years of happy union, her weeping husband is now left to lament his irreparable loss. The surviving children are: Margaret, wife of John Foley of Hastings, Nebraska; William, of Kearney, Nebraska; Mary, Sister M. Genevieve, of the order of Mercy, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Bridget, Agnes and Maurice. All except Mrs. Foley were present at the burial.
The funeral took place at 11 o'clock Wednesday, from St. Patrick's church, where a solemn requiem mass was celebrated, by Rev. Father Power, assisted by Rev. Kurtz, Rev. J. McCormick, and Rev. T Sullilvan. After a funeral sermon by the pastor, a long procession of relatives, friends, and sympathising acquaintences followed the remains to their last resting place, in Holy Cross Cemetery. There the ashes of the good woman were consigned to their long home to await the trumpet call of St. Michael, at the Judgement Day, when "earth and sea shall give up their dead, mortality be changed into immortality, and corruptible put on incorruption.
She was one of the old settlers who saw the country, and the city, and the church of her choice, grow up, like the proverbial mustard seed, from little beginnings. Long years ago when Langworthy was a more important place than Anamosa, her home was a sanctuary for the few of the old faith then scattered around in those parts. Her faith, and her faithful labors, co-operated to no small degree to make christianity in Jones county what it is today.
One by one, the old stock are fast passing away. When they shall all be gathered to the clay of their fathers, may the providence of a merciful God grant that others, as good as their ancestors, shall rise to all their places. Mrs. Fay has left behind her a name that her successors may well be proud of. She needs no marble tomb above her grave to parade her praises. Her life, as wife, mother, and neighbor, will long bespeak her merits. The Wise Man said; " a good name is better than great riches." Her memory will rise over the grassy mound that covers her clay---a monument richer than any mere written or spoken words. May she rest in God eternally. The pall bearers: James Dorsey, Matthew Chesire, John Fagan, Phil Daly, Jeffrey Power, James Spellman, Hon. J.A. Green had charge of the funeral arrangements.
The family will ever cherish the kindest remembrances for the many who testified their loving friendship, sympathy, and esteem, during the awful period, when the over hanging shadow of death made the hours the saddest of existence. A published card of thanks would indeed be cold compensation for their goodness. But they did not come for thanks. They came to say a last tribute of respect, and affection to one who was well worthy of it. We shall not soon look upon her like again. Peace to her ashes.
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Source: Anamosa Journal, Anamosa, Iowa, 18 Feb 1897