Catherine Ann “Cathy” O’Byrne, 86, of Albert Lea, entered into God’s eternal care on Wednesday, June 1, 2022, at the Mayo Clinic-Austin with family by her side.
Born on Friday, October 25, 1935, in Albert Lea, she was a daughter of William and Ann (Harty) O’Byrne. A 1954 graduate of Albert Lea High School, Cathy graduated from the St. Mary’s School of Nursing in 1957. Her compassionate heart and love of people led Cathy to work at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, the UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital in Oakland, CA, the former Naeve Hospital, and Thorne Crest Senior Living Community in Albert Lea. Strong in her Catholic faith, Cathy had a great sense of humor and enjoyed word puzzles, John Denver music, cats, quilts, and children. However, her greatest joy came from being with her family.
Words cannot express how important Aunt Cathy was to all the nieces and nephews. Since Cathy didn’t have children of her own, she was always there for everyone that needed her. Cathy helped raise some of the kids in the family, most recently her great nephew, Isaiah. Cathy and Isaiah had a very special bond and something Isaiah will cherish forever. Cathy was an incredibly special aunt to all her nieces and nephews and was always excited to hear about a new great and great-great niece and nephew being born. She memorized everyone’s birthdays and each year sent a card without missing a beat. She loved quilting; she made all of her ‘kids’ their own quilts and gave away too many to count. Many of which are still cherished to this day.
Cathy was an avid reader, reading a book a day was not unusual. She read the Star Tribune daily. She was very spunky, smart and a great storyteller. She loved a good joke and a funny book or card. She was especially fond of her kitties. She had a big heart and loved any animal that she came across. Sometimes these unexpected visitors would enter through her cat door! Skunks, opossums, chipmunks, and raccoons!
Catherine is preceded in death by her parents, William and Ann O’Byrne, Sister, Mary Bennett, Brothers Robert and Tom O’Byrne, Sister-in-law Janet O’Byrne, and nephew Mark O’Byrne.
Left to cherish Catherine’s memory are three brothers, William O’Byrne, Hugh (Karen R.) O’Byrne, and Michael (Paulette Trimble) O’Byrne; nine nieces and nephews, Steve O’Byrne, Julie (Ray) Jacobs, Bob Bennett, Scott Bennett, Jim (Dede) O’Byrne, Chris (Steve) Vogt, Angie (Dan) Kolker, Jennifer O’Byrne, and Isaiah (Emily) O’Byrne; great-nieces and nephews; and great-great nieces and nephews. Her long-time nursing school friend Rosemary Wilson from Texas and her many friends she made while living at Hidden Creek.
A Memorial Mass will be held on Thursday, June 9, 2022, at 11:00AM at St. Theodore Catholic Church, in Albert Lea. The family will receive friends at a visitation one hour prior to the service. Interment will follow at St. Theodore Catholic Church Cemetery.