Obituary: Marie Ginnane, formerly of Yorktown Heights – Patch | Start Classified

YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY — Marie Louise Theresa Rickert Ginnane passed this life on July 22, 2022. She was a super elder approaching her 101st birthday.

Marie’s parents were Caroline “Carrie” Theresa Gossl Rickert (1895–1979) and Richard William Rickert (1893–1987). All of her grandparents were born in Germany and emigrated to the United States, where they settled in neighborhoods of New York City, mostly Brooklyn. Richard and Carrie married in Brooklyn, where their first child, Marie, was born on August 5, 1921. A new home in Richmond Hill, Queens was purchased and the three settled into family life at 104-24 127th St. Last child, Richie – Marie’s brother – added to the family a few years later. The German language was widely spoken in Marie’s house, especially when relatives came to visit, so Marie grew up speaking German and understanding it, making her the family’s first port of call for a quick German translation.

Marie attended PS 121 and graduated in 1935. The graduation program shows that she was an honor student and had perfect attendance. Marie attended Richmond Hill High School, graduating in 1939. Playing Amy in a school production of Little Women was an achievement.

Life in Richmond Hill was family and neighborhood oriented. Marie was the one who would watch and help her talented father work in the yard, making repairs or building things like a boat and garage. His flowers – roses and lilies of the valley – adorned the small courtyard. One ongoing repair he was sent in was plugging clapboards on neighbor Mrs. LeBeau’s house. The clapboards came loose as Marie backed out of the very narrow driveway between the two houses as she was learning to drive. The family camped, boated, swam, and picnicked on beaches in and around New York City, such as the Wading River on Long Island Sound. Marie took piano lessons as a girl. She enjoyed playing the piano, but found the concerts required disconcerting.

Marie made her First Communion and Confirmation in the Catholic Church.

After graduating from high school, Marie attended Heffley Business School, where she learned typing and shorthand, although, in her words, her shorthand was “not that good”. She was then hired by the New York Telephone Company. Her first job at the phone company was sorting the mail and putting it in the mailboxes. One side job was going to the post office and mailing her boss’s alimony to his ex-wife! She moved on to a job called editing, which involved double-checking the service orders that the field workers created. She met a nice girl at the phone company, another Marie. They mainly brought their lunch with them but occasionally ate out.

At some point during her tenure with a telephone company, Marie was introduced to Andrew John Robert Ginnane, known as Bob. They married in 1944. He was in the US Army awaiting orders. They lived with Carrie and Rich for a short time and then moved to Alabama for Bob’s military training.

After World War II, Marie and Bob moved to Brookfield, Connecticut as one of the founding families of a small quasi-agricultural/religious community. The life and writings of Dorothy Day, which dealt with community service and voluntary poverty, were a motivating influence. The experiment was an early back-to-the-land movement. Maintaining a 0.4 hectare garden and raising livestock provided sustenance. A man was hired to kill the pigs that the families salted to heal. One year they were giving away pork chops, beans and peaches for Christmas.

Marie recalled once shooting some pheasants which it turned out belonged to a neighbor who had raised them. He complained and that ended Mom’s hunting career! Toward the end of the Connecticut experiment, it was clear that external revenue was necessary. The Ginnane family moved to Yorktown Heights where six children grew up. In addition to keeping the family together as a housewife, Marie later worked as a lunch nurse in an elementary school, as a nutritionist in a hospital and as a teacher’s assistant in a Montessori school.

Marie’s life continued to blossom when she moved to Colorado in 1995 to share home and family life with her son Greg, his wife Felice and children Felice Seigneur and Eric Heffenger.

Marie was predeceased by husband Bob Ginnane and sons Joe, John, Greg and Mike. She is survived by her son Bob and daughter Mary, as well as beloved parents-in-law, nephews, nieces, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.

Haikus for Marie
Over ten decades
Of discovery and change
Shy smile at heart.

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