Idita Toole Dennehy | obituary
Idita Frances Toole Dennehy, 86, died peacefully at her home in Riverside on June 26, 2022.
Idita was born in Abington, Pennsylvania on July 5, 1935, the daughter of Edward C. Toole and Ida Ramirez Toole. She grew up in Philadelphia in a wonderful home, with loving parents and with her brother Ed, who was “the best brother ever”. His parents instilled in him a love of music and literature and taught him that if you don’t know something, then “look it up.” She spent many summers with her family in Ocean City, NJ, and listened to music on Steel Pier in Atlantic City. She attended St. Mary’s Academy from freshman year to high school graduation, where she made lifelong friends, including Winnie, her future sister-in-law, who introduced Idita to John .
She was especially proud of her Hispanic heritage and enjoyed the time she spent with relatives in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico.
Idita had a love for literature, theater, human history, art history and the creative arts. She made beautiful works in ceramics, calligraphy, crewel embroidery and decoupage; she played beautiful music on guitar, piano and autoharp; and she was particularly good at writing poetry. The writings of William Shakespeare, the paintings of Vincent Van Gogh and Claude Monet and the music of Roy Orbison were among his many passions. She was always delighted to travel; his favorite destinations were the Holy Land and England. At home, she enjoyed tending to her gardens as well as her ever-growing collection of ornamental frogs.
Idita worked at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia as a laboratory technician before marrying Dr. John Dennehy on June 16, 1956. She became a full-time homemaker and raised six children, who lead all a successful and productive life. . She then returned to school and graduated with honors in her studies of anthropology and sociology from Bloomsburg University.
Idita then started a new career, helping other people’s children as a social worker with Northumberland County Children and Youth Services. She was named Social Worker of the Year in 1993 by the Pennsylvania Foster Parents’ Association.
She was an active participant in the programs of St. Joseph’s Church and School in Danville and served as a reader for many years. She was especially grateful for the love and support of the members of the prayer group, the choir, the home communion ministers and the great ladies of St. Joseph’s Church (too many to mention, but she loved all!). In addition to church activities, she was a longtime Den Mother of Den 1 in Pack 39 (“We’re the Best Den in the US A.!”).
Idita is survived by her children and their spouses, Michael Dennehy (Brenda Fischer-Dennehy) of Danville, John Dennehy (Mark Wilson) of Baltimore, Md., Patrick Dennehy (Terri Reichley Dennehy) of Elizabethtown, Kathleen Haubert (Frank Haubert ) of Berwick, Mary Dennehy of New York, NY and Thomas Dennehy (Laura McLendon) of San Francisco, California; and nine grandchildren, Paul Dennehy (Franny Geller), Nora Dennehy (Manny Chico), Nancy Dennehy, Trevor Dennehy, Ryan Dennehy, Tyler Haubert, Matthew Haubert, Jason Haubert (Jennifer Flick) and Jeremiah Haubert.
She was predeceased by her parents and her husband, John Dennehy. Now she can meet John again and resume their “great debates” on important issues surrounding the human condition, ranging from “the origin of the universe” to “whether you should iron permanent press shirts”. Also preceding her in death are her brothers-in-law, Harry Young and Francis Dennehy; and her sister-in-law, Sr. Nora Dennehy, RGS. She is survived by her brother, Edward C. Toole Jr.; and his sisters-in-law, Mary Walrath, Marilyn Toole, Margaret Dennehy and Winifred Young, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
Idita and her children wanted to give special thanks to Carol and Tim Heddings. Thanks to their compassionate, helpful and loving care, she was able to stay safely and comfortably in her Riverside home.
A Christian burial mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Friday July 1 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, 68 Center Street, Danville, with its pastor, the Reverend Timothy Marcoe as celebrant, as well as the father. James Lease and Fr. Franck Karwacki. Visitation for family and friends will be at the church beginning at 9:30 a.m.
Memorial contributions may be made in Idita’s name to Catholic Relief Services or the Columbia-Montour Council, Boy Scouts of America.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Brady Funeral Home, Inc. Please share memories and messages of support at www.BradyFuneralHome.com.
Idita cherished those who accompanied her on her life’s journey, especially her children and grandchildren, and wanted them all to remember: “And what does the Lord require of you, if not to do righteousness, to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8.