Bessie Gaffey McKenna, age 99, of Albuquerque, New Mexico, formerly of Storm Lake, died Wednesday, February 13, 2002 at the Mission Manor Care Center in Albuquerque.
Funeral Mass will be held on Tuesday, February 19th at 10 a.m. at St. Mary's Catholic Church, Storm Lake, with Reverend Douglas Klein officiating. Burial will be in the St. Mary's Cemetery. A memorial fund has been established for the American Cancer Society.
Friends may call at the Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home, 300 Cayuga Street, Storm Lake from 3 to 7 p.m. on Monday. There will be Legion of Mary Rosary at 3:30 p.m. and a parish scripture service at 6:30 p.m. on Monday at the funeral home.
Bessie Marie Gaffey was born April 2, 1902 in Storm Lake, the daughter of William and Bertha (Conn) Gaffey. She graduated from Alta High School and received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Iowa State University. She received her Teaching Degree from Buena Vista University, Storm Lake, in 1948. Bessie also attended post-graduate school at the Chicago Art Institute. She taught school in Texas, Missouri and many Iowa schools including Hayes Township in Storm Lake.
She was married to Michael Mark McKenna on June 11, 1932 at St. Mary's Catholic Church, Storm Lake. He preceded her in death August 13, 1975.
Bess was very involved in the community, serving with the Girl Scouts, 4-H, Storm Lake Garden Club, Buena Vista County Hospital Auxiliary, AAUW, The American Cancer Society and Meals On Wheels. She was a past Grand Regent of the Catholic Daughters of America, a member of the Legion of Mary and was a past Worthy Matron of the Order of Eastern Star. In 1985 due to failing health, Bess moved to live with her daughter Marcia. She has resided with LeRoy and Marcia until her death.
Survivors include two daughters, Marcia Pickens and her husband LeRoy and Maureen O'Rourke, all of Albuquerque, New Mexico; five granddaughters, Susan LaPointe, Idaho Falls, Idaho, Lisa Plummer, El Paso, Texas, Maribeth Keller, El Paso, Texas, Marti Drake, Council Bluffs, and Kathy O'Rourke-Calfy, Coweta, Oklahoma; three grandsons, Michael O'Rourke, Nashville, Tennessee, Patrick O'Rourke, Monks Corner, South Carolina and Brian O'Rourke, Goose Creek, South Carolina; several great and great-great grandchildren, and nieces and nephews.
Preceding Bess in death were her parents; her husband; four sisters, Pearl Chindlund, Gwen Butler, Opal Lacy and Vivian Keister; and one brother, Lewis Gaffey.