Kathleen Marie (Sweeney) Nageotte, an awe-inspiring mother who raised nine children, made homes for her family in four states, and rejoiced in her Irish-American heritage and Roman Catholic faith, died Oct. 19, 2023, in Phoenix, Arizona. She was 96. Her loved ones are comforted by the knowledge that she has been reunited with and is dancing again with her husband of 66 years, Frank Nageotte, who preceded her in death.
Born Sept. 29, 1927, in Cleveland, Ohio, she was one of four children of Michael and Ellen Sweeney. She grew up in Cleveland and met Frank in 1947. They married in 1949. Their first four children were born in Cleveland. The family moved for a brief time to the Columbus, Ohio area before moving to River Edge, New Jersey in 1958 where three more children were born. In 1967, the family moved across the country to the San Francisco Bay Area where two more children were born. The family eventually settled in Paradise Valley, Arizona.
Standing 5-feet tall, Kathleen was the quintessential matriarch, a woman who ruled supermarket aisles, her household, school, and family holidays through the force of her strong will and wicked sense of humor. Her children owe most of their success and moral compasses to her steady and sure parenting.
Well after their children were grown and had built families of their own, Frank and Kathleen lived out their lives at the Sagewood retirement village in Phoenix.
Kathleen will be remembered as a person who loved to laugh and sing, a skilled artist, a competitive card player, and a good cook who loved to entertain large groups of family and friends. In addition, she was a devoted member of several volunteer organizations.
She is survived by her nine children: Frank (Susan) of Coronado, CA; Mike (Monica) of Long Beach, CA; Mary Ellen Lemon (Pete) of London, Ontario; Judy of Cave Creek, AZ; Mark (Sandy) of Phoenix, AZ; Jim (Lisa) of London, England; Kathleen Donohoe (Neil) of Green Cove Springs, FL; Peggy of Phoenix, AZ; and Joe (Cynthia) of Lexington, KY. She was predeceased by her son, John, who died shortly after birth, her sisters, Annamae and Mary, and her brother, James. She is also survived by her 21 grandchildren and her 13 great-grandchildren. Kathleen was an active member of St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church in Scottsdale; a Dame in the Sovereign Military Order of Malta; a Lady in the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre; and a member and past officer of the Christ Child Society of Phoenix.
Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. with a rosary at 6:00 pm on Thursday, Nov. 9, at Whitney & Murphy Funeral Home, 4800 E. Indian School Rd., Phoenix. A funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 10, at St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church, 6261 N. Granite Reef. Rd., Scottsdale. A private burial will take place at St. Francis Catholic Cemetery in Phoenix. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested contributions to the Christ Child Society of Phoenix, 4633 N. 54th St., Phoenix, AZ. 85018.