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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Janet G. O’Connell, 96

Janet Griffin O’Connell of Westport died Jan. 19. She was 96.

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Janet O’Connell: speech pathologist, Realtor. Contributed photo

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., she was a graduate of The College of New Rochelle and earned a master’s from Columbia University.

During World War II, she joined the American Red Cross and was posted to Miami Beach where she served until the end of the war supporting the Army Air Force redistribution service, while also meeting her future husband Bob.

She taught speech and drama (her first love) at both her alma mater and Manhattanville College. After focusing on her young daughters, she began work as a speech pathologist for the Norwalk school system.

Over her 20- year career at Norwalk, she established a model program for the speech and hearing impaired as her job evolved to supervisor of language, speech, hearing and academically talented.

During this time, she also served as president of the Connecticut chapter of the American Speech and Hearing Association.

Upon retirement in 1984, she began yet another successful career as a realtor for Coldwell Banker, where she was a member of the Million Dollar Club.

She was also a longtime parishioner of Saint Luke Church in Westport where she served on the Flower Committee, was a Eucharistic minister and a representative on the Interfaith Council.

She also served on the board of directors of her condominium association. She loved travel, flowers, singing around the piano, puns, Tom Brady, Ricky Martin, cruises, Childe Hassam, cocktails at Compo, the Westport Library, and most of all faith and family.

She is survived by daughters Barbara of Westport and Nancy (with husband Ray Wiacek) of Chevy Chase, Md., grandchildren Katie, John, Billy and Michael also of Chevy Chase and her cousin Helen of Weston, Vt., who was like a sister to her.

A funeral mass will be celebrated on Saturday, Jan. 30, starting at 11 a.m. at Saint Luke Church, 49 Turkey Hill Road North, with burial to follow at Spring Grove Cemetery, Darien.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Saint Luke Church, 84 Long Lots Road, Westport, CT or ILADS (for Lyme Disease Support), PO Box 341461, Bethesda, MD 20827-1461.

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Posted 01/26/16 at 04:50 PM  Permalink



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