Carolyn Connelly

Obituary of Carolyn M. Connelly


Carolyn Melville Connelly died peacefully at Highland Hospital, with her daughter Claudia Griffin holding her hand, on Friday January 8, 2021 at the age of 95¾.  She was the daughter of Arthur Albert Melville and Margaret Vick Melville.  A mother of five, grandmother of twelve, and great grandmother of nine, she leaves behind a family that she loved deeply and who will miss her terribly.  Carolyn was preceded in death by her parents, by her loving husband of sixty-two years Dr. Jack Lewis Connelly, by her sisters Gertrude Hart and Sue Bond, by her son-in law Thomas David Lustig, and by her great-grandson Jacob Grell.


            Carolyn lived her entire life in Rochester NY.  She attended Madison High School where she met and dated the love of her life – Jack Connelly.  Jack always claimed that Carolyn was “the prettiest girl at Madison High” and we all believed him.  During World War II, Carolyn did secretarial work for the Rochester Board of Education. After the war, Carolyn married Jack on August 28, 1948 at Immaculate Conception Church, flanked by her sisters Gertrude Hart and Sue Bond, cousin Margaret McMasters, brother Art Melville and brothers-in-law Jerry (Bud) Connelly and Jack Hart.  August 28, 1948 remains the hottest August 28 in Rochester weather records, but the heat did not deter them. Carolyn and Jack eventually bought a house on Lyndale Drive in Gates.  While Jack conducted his pediatric practice, Carolyn held down the fort and raised five boisterous children. She succeeded in shepherding them all into successful professional careers.  In addition to her homemaking duties, Carolyn was active in the St. Mary’s Hospital Seton Club, raising funds for the hospital by making various arts and crafts.  She was a clever bridge player and a sometimes golfer, a long-time member of Brook-Lea Country Club. She was an excellent cook and a master knitter and crocheter, making beautiful afghans for all family members.  She loved to sing, and she filled the house with music, particularly from her Broadway shows and Harry Belafonte record collection. She greatly enjoyed mystery stories and crossword puzzles and could always be counted on to supply all the answers to clues that involved French words.  She was an avid  Trekkie and treasured her tribble. She loved game shows and could beat us all at the nightly Jeopardy gathering. Carolyn travelled with Jack and some of her children to Canada, the Caribbean, Mexico, and Europe, as well as throughout the Rocky Mountain West.  Everywhere she went she purchased unusual dolls to add to her vast doll collection.


            Carolyn will be most fondly remembered as Grandma, always providing a warm, welcoming homecoming to her children and grandchildren –- whether in summer by the backyard pool or at Christmas time.  Christmas was a magical holiday and served as a large family reunion.  Carolyn would bake and frost dozens of Christmas cookies, deck the halls with her several hundred Santa Clauses, make sure the grandkids had enough sweets to last all year, and cook a large delicious meal. 


            During her Golden Years, after Jack’s death, Carolyn resided at the Villages and then the Legacy at Maiden Park, participating in numerous activities and making good friends.  She shined in their choral groups, still having the beautiful soprano voice that was professionally trained when she was in high school. She will be dearly missed by all who knew her. When illness struck, Carolyn was treated and received excellent loving care from the Staff at Highland Hospital, for which the family is very grateful.


            Carolyn is survived by her five children:  Paula Connelly of Boulder CO; Leslie Jablonski (Joe) of Greece NY; Jacquelyn Connelly (Paul Morocco) of Plattsburgh NY; Claudia Griffin (Steve) of Norwich NY; and Jack Connelly Jr. (Shari) of Hawaii.  Also twelve grandchildren:  Katie Grell (Geoff) of Greece NY; Brooks Lustig (Natalie Robinson) of Louisville CO; Joe Jablonski (Lori) of Charlottesville VA; Anna Jablonski of Philadelphia PA; Reid Lustig of Boulder CO; Matthew Connelly of Hilo HI; Perry Morocco of Chicago IL; David Jablonski (Hilary) of Farmington NY; Cassidy Griffin of Boston MA; Eve Morocco (Taso Skalkos) of Boston MA; John Jablonski of Greece NY; and Colby Griffin of Clinton Corners NY.  Also, eight great grandchildren:  Ethan Grell, Zoe Grell, Eddie Grell, Joey Jablonski, Adalynn Jablonski, Maris Jablonski, Rowan Lustig and Georgios Skalkos.  She is also survived by her brother Art Melville (Helen) of Victor NY.


            Due to the pandemic, no services will be held.  Carolyn will be buried next to Jack at Mount Hope Cemetery.  All who wish to remember Carolyn please donate in her memory and in the memory of her infant great grandson Jacob Grell to the March of Dimes.

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