Cathleen Cahill Barber, 84, our loving mother, grandmother, sister and aunt, died of natural causes in Chicago on February 24, 2021. Cathy was born in Endicott, NY, but lived the majority of her life in Chicago. She graduated cum laude from the College of New Rochelle, and for more than fifty years remained devoted to the school and to the friends she made there. An accomplished genealogical sleuth, Cathy traced her family tree with gusto, poring over ship manifests, baptismal records and country graveyards. She never did uncover her family’s first ancestor, but the excitement of the challenge was its reward. Cathy was equally passionate about royal Tudor history, fiction and non-fiction. Her favorite author was the late Sharon Kay Penman. Cathy was the rare layman who understood who was who in the War of the Roses and could explain it cogently and with humor to her uncomprehending listeners. Cathy loved travel, cooking and reading the Wall Street Journal. But above all she loved her children and grandchildren, who will miss everything about her and her warm, beautiful smile.
Cathleen is survived by her four children Christopher (Katherine), Patrick (Meg), Amy (Jeff), Julie, and nine grandchildren. She is also survived by her four siblings James, Margaret, Ellen and Mary Jane. She was predeceased by her husband James Barber, and by her parents, James and Nora Cahill.
A Funeral Mass will be celebrated Friday 10 am at St. Ambrose Church, 203 Washington Avenue, Endicott. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, Donations may be made to Holy Name Cathedral 730 N. Wabash Ave., Chicago, IL 60611.