Ann A. Mullaney
March 14, 1917 – January 15, 2020
Ann Mullaney was born at home in South Omaha on March 14, 1917. Her parents, William and Ursula Stankus had immigrated to the US from Lithuania in the early 1900s. She grew up with an older brother, John and a younger sister, Sally and brother, Steve. Her parents were Catholics and Ann and her siblings attended nearby St. Anthony’s school and church. She did well in school, and as an eighth grader, she was chosen to be the May queen for the traditional crowning of the Blessed Virgin.
Although the family was poor, Ann had many good memories of her childhood. The neighborhood was a Lithuanian community and she had fun with different activities at the local Settlement House. She talked about the food that she loved her mother to cook – mainly dishes with potatoes and various pig parts from the meat packing plant where her father worked. Christmas was a special time for the family and her mother followed the Lithuanian custom of serving 12 different dishes on Christmas Eve. After dinner, her Lithuanian aunt would visit dressed as Santa Claus.
Ann wanted to attend Sacred Heart High School, but she couldn’t afford the tuition. To pay her fees she lived in the convent and did various tasks for the nuns. She remembered pilfering coconut from the pantry because it was a treat she loved and rarely got to have. However, she was very lonely at the convent and when she became sick, she returned home to recover and attend school at South High.
Ann learned to sew at an early age and became an excellent seamstress. As a young adult she worked at an Omaha sewing factory where she met her future husband, Jim Mullaney. They married on June 17, 1939 and had three children, Michael, Patricia and Maureen. Ann and Jim were loving, kind and generous people, happy to help others. They were devoted Catholics and pioneer members of St. Pius X parish. Ann was dedicated to her children and later adored her three grandchildren, Julie, Mark and Jennifer. She and Jim spent many happy holidays with them both in Omaha and Colorado. Ann and Jim lived for most of their lives in an old house in Benson. When the house became too much for them in their 80s, they moved to New Cassel Retirement Center where Ann said it was like being on vacation. Jim died in 2008 at age 93 and Ann lived nearly another ten years without him. They had been married for 69 years. Shortly after her 100th birthday, her youngest child, Maureen died at age 59 from a rare brain cancer. Although she was devastated, Ann found a way to keep on going.
In spite of increasing aches and pains as she grew older, Ann maintained a cheerful positive attitude. She liked talking to people and found something good in each day to enjoy, especially the desserts and candy she loved. She spent many hours working on her search-a-word books and attended daily Mass when she could. She didn’t talk about dying and didn’t want to discuss her funeral. Instead she said that “every day I tell the good Lord that I would like to stay on earth a little while longer.” Ann died after a brief illness and made her way to heaven on January 15, 2020 – at the age of 102 years, 10 months and 1 day.
Preceded in death by husband, James B. Mullaney; and daughter, Maureen Eischeid. Survived by son, James Michael Mullaney (Jackie); daughter, Patricia Ann Lauer (Bill); son-in-law, Daniel J. Eischeid; three grandchildren, Julie, Mark and Jennifer; many nieces, nephews, grand nieces and nephews and great-grand nieces and nephews.
Family will receive friends Wednesday, January 22nd from 5pm to 7pm, at the West Center Chapel followed by a VIGIL SERVICE at 7pm. VISITATION: Thursday, January 23rd from 1pm to 1:30pm, New Cassel Retirement Center (900 N 90th St.) followed by a FUNERAL SERVICE at 1:30pm. INTERMENT: Calvary Cemetery.