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Shirley J. McGonnell | 89

May 26, 1934 - May 2, 2024

Shirley J. McGonnell, 89, of 25 Mark Street, St. Marys, passed away Thursday, May 2, 2024 at Penn Highlands Elk Hospital.

She was born May 26, 1934 in Willimantic, CT to the late Carl and Margaret Anderson Warren.  She was a graduate of Indiana High School, Class of 1951 and continued her education graduating from Indiana State Teacher’s College Class, of 1955.  She started her teaching career in Port Allegheny in 1955 and continued teaching for over 35 years.  With the majority spent teaching kindergarten and 2nd grade at South St. Marys Street Elementary, she continued to volunteer there for many years after her retirement.

Shirley married the love of her life, the late James A. McGonnell on June 1, 1957 in St. Gabriel’s Church in Port Allegheny.  Jim and Shirley were married for over 62 years. Jim preceded her in death on June 17, 2019.

Shirley is survived by three daughters, Julie Kimbrell and her husband James of Hunker, PA, Joy Clontz and her husband Richard of Irwin, PA, and Jayne Kitko and her husband John of Flinton, PA; three sons, Jeffrey J. McGonnell and his wife Jayne of Davidson, NC, Joel W. McGonnell and his wife Catalina of Concord, NC, and James R. McGonnell and his wife Kate of St. Marys; 14 grandchildren: Alex Kimbrell, Amanda (Michael) Mellon, Rachel (Ashden) Clontz, Eric (Karina) Clontz, Mily, Selena, and Benjamin McGonnell, William (Jennifer) McGonnell, Anna and Meghan McGonnell; J.J., Jackson, and Joseph Kitko; five great-grandchildren: Caylyn, Lydia, Bennett, Leona, and Emerson; sisters: Nancy (William) Moore, Kathyanne (William) Dobda, Patricia (Mark) Jones, Carla (Vincent) Leta, Terry (Donald) Sarokon, and Melissa (Lou) McCoy; a brother, Edward (Rhonda) Warren; sister-in-law, Rita Meehan, brother-in-law, Earl Krueger, and many nieces, nephews and great nieces and nephews..

In addition to her husband and parents, Shirley was preceded in death by her step-mother, Helen Fair Warren; a sister Delores Taylor; and a grandson, Setlar Sykes.

Shirley loved her family, was a lifelong avid reader and enjoyed her Pittsburgh sports teams.  Jim and Shirley loved to travel and spend time visiting family and friends.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated in the Sacred Heart Church on Monday, May 6, 2024 at 10:00AM.  Burial will follow in the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery.

Visitation will be held in the Lynch-Radkowski Funeral Home on Sunday, May 5, 2024 from 3:00PM until 6:00PM.

Memorials, if desired, may be made to Penn Highlands Community Nurses Hospice, 757 Johnsonburg Road, Suite 200, St. Marys, PA 15857 or to South St. Marys Street Elementary School PTO, 370 South St. Marys Street, St. Marys, PA 15857.



May 5, 2024
3:00PM - 6:00PM
Lynch-Radkowski Funeral Home

Funeral Service

May 6, 2024
10:00 AM
Sacred Heart Church

Final Resting Place

May 6, 2024
11:00 AM
St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery

Tribute Wall


  1. To Julie, Joy, Jeff and the other McGonnell’s.

    I recall so clearly your dad at the store and your mom trying to keep track of the many kids in and out of your home and next door yard. I hope you all find PEACE in her life well lived. My best wishes.

    Patrick McQuone

  2. So sad I am not there with you. The last time we talked she suggested a good book. Always a reader. So many memories. Shirley and Jim had a wonderful family. Blessings to them all.

  3. Always a smile and a big hello…Praying for God’s blessings and sweet memories.

  4. My prayers and thoughts are with the McGonnell family. Shirley was a wonderful friend and a very special teacher.

  5. Shirley lived life full of love. I have many fond loving memories spent with her and the entire McGonnell family. I am sorry to hear of your loss. She was a true gift in my life and I know how hard it is to say good-bye to such a special person/mother. May God’s Holy Spirit be with you all through this.

  6. Our thoughts and prayers to the whole McGonnell family.
    Growing up on Mark Street there were always kids to join in
    Ball games on the vacant lot between our homes.
    My Mom, Jean, and Jim shared the same birthday!
    We hope happy memories will guide you through.

  7. Words can’t express the emptiness we will feel in our neighborhood, she and Jim were great friends to all.
    Our condolences to her children and their growing families.
    We will miss her.

  8. She always called me her baby brother and it was fun to run into her on the boat going to the Steeler games. I never knew when she was going. I had season tickets, she and Jim would go and I would never know they were going and I don’t know how many times we run into them on the boat going across the river. She was always my big sis and called me her baby brother.

  9. Thoughts and prayers to the family. Wonderful teacher and person always had a smile.

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