Linda A. O'Connell, age 79, of Port Jervis, New York passed away on Monday August 16, 2021 at her home with her loving family at her side. She was born on October 4, 1941 in Port Jervis, NY, the daughter of the late Kenneth and Helen (Cortright) Hemleb. She was a graduate of the Port Jervis High School class of 1959. On September 27, 1959 Linda married her high school sweetheart Richard O'Connell and the two settled down in Port Jervis where they raised their four children. Linda was a long time waitress, most notably at the former WT Grants restaurant, and later K-Mart, where she forged many friendships with her customers and coworkers based on her easy and pleasant personality. She later worked for the Tri-States Gazette and the Family Dollar store to help keep herself busy and facilitate her QVC shopping excursions. An avid doll and trinket collector, Linda would lavishly decorate her home at the change of every season but most notably at Halloween and Christmas times. One could not drive by her Gariss Street house without being greeted by a life size witch, stirring a cauldron, on her front porch or seeing one of seven or eight or nine Christmas trees which she proudly decorated and displayed each holiday. The best family picnics, barbecues and graduation parties were held in her spacious side yards.
She is survived by her three daughters; Jacqueline O'Connell of Port Jervis, Jerilyn Riordan and her husband Steve of Port Jervis, Patricia O'Connell Hawkins also of Port Jervis, her son Richard O'Connell and his wife Elke of Barryville NY, her cherished sister Joyce Bothe and husband Bill and their son Billy (Amy) of Vale, NC, her beloved grandchildren Jeffrey (Danielle) Sauschuck, Matthew (Jessica) Riordan, Timothy (Lynzee) Riordan, David (Charlotte) Hawkins, Lauren Hawkins, Colin (Michelle) O'Connell, Dylan (Shanelle) O'Connell, Aaron O'Connell, Emma O'Connell and her great grandchildren Liam, Ellie, Sofia, Rylee and Cooper, several nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband Richard O'Connell and grandson, Sean Riordan. Visitation will be held 11 AM-1 PM, Thursday, August 19, at the Knight-Auchmoody Funeral Home, 154 E. Main St., Port Jervis, Funeral services will follow at 1 PM, Thursday at the funeral home. Rev. Nancy Vonderhorst will officiate. Interment will follow at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Port Jervis, NY. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Orange & Sullivan, 800 Stony Brook Court, Newburgh, NY 12550. Arrangements are by the Knight-Auchmoody Funeral Home, 154 E. Main St., Port Jervis, NY. For information, directions or to send condolence note to the family visit knight-auchmoody.com.
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