Carole Ann Kennedy went to heaven on March 16th, 2021.
She was born Carole Ann Margadonna. She was born with wings that could span the universe.
Mom learned how to be independent, resilient, and resourceful quite early in life. It has been said that she started working at 11 (though this has not been validated as of yet) and by the age of 18 she crossed the country from Rhode Island to California and back again.
Mom could stretch a dollar like no one else. Mom always had more than one job. Nursery schoolteacher by day, waitress or chewing gum surveyor by night (her trunk was filled with gum!) Housing Director by day, realtor by night. Yet one of mom’s happiest days was her retirement day (giving birth, to Tricia, was a close second).
When it came to her role as a mother, mom took no prisoners. She had one clear mission; to raise her children to become strong, independent, responsible, and principled adults. To accomplish her goal, she was quite creative. She mastered the art of designing the most intricate ‘chore charts. She seemed to know exactly how to try to keep us out of trouble. Responsibility and Attitude, that is what she preached. And when it came to her daughters, bedtime stories were definitely not about knights in armor saving damsels in distress. No, mom’s bedtime stories were about working women who knew how to rely on themselves to meet their own needs and fulfill their own desires.
Three of mom’s four kids were in diapers at the same time and she still managed to perfect the art of the “english muffin” pizza. They were a staple in our house. Mom’s love for her children was related to how obedient they were and if her kid’s friends were respectful, she loved them just as much, often taking one in if they needed a place to stay for a while.
She gave the best advice, some of her most memorable quotes were, “There is a place for everything, and everything has its place” and if anything was ‘out of place’ you would hear about it. Other classic ‘Carol-isms’ were, “Your ass is grass and I’m the lawn mower”, or “I’ll give you something to cry about” and the frequently heard “food for thought”. She also had several favorite swear words, that we cannot repeat here.
While raising her 4 wild and wonderful kids’ mom could often be found sitting at the kitchen table, talking on the phone & doodling as she doled out advice to those who sought her out for her famous words of wisdom.
Mom could be quite competitive; she was a ruthless card-player. You wanted to be on her team as you were sure to win. You did not want to be her opponent as it was certain she would be on your case if you did not follow the rules (rules she at times made up to favor her card shark skills).
Mom was an ‘enigma’; she defied science. On the outside she was tough & bossy, yet she had limitless compassion. She was a strict follower of rules yet broke the speed limit whenever she was behind the wheel. If you misplaced her scissors, there would be hell to pay, but if you called her from a police station in need of bail money she was in the car before you were done telling the story.
Mom mastered the art of not only telling others what to do, but also telling them how to do it. She was not to be questioned, ever. She had no time for nonsense and suffered no fools, but if faced with that game, she could play better than anyone.
When it came to decorating, mom missed her calling. At any given moment something in her home was being upgraded, revised, or renovated. She was also a consummate and meticulous organizer. In her kitchen, mom cooked only when she felt like it & no one was allowed in when she was working her magic, she did not want to deal with a mess.
Our mom had a beautiful voice. Not too many people know this but as a child, she sang on the radio. Growing up, whether in our home or in the car, the radio would be on and mom would be singing. It was lovely to hear her.
Mom was never one to brag about herself, but she loved bragging about her children. She herself was not showy, but she was good at showing off those around her. She may never have told you directly how she felt about you, but you can be sure everyone else around her knew.
Mom was a trusted friend to more people than one could count. She had ‘street cred’ and she could hold her own in any formal debate. We have been told that many friends and family members are scrambling to find their Power of Attorney replacements. People were drawn to her for her trustworthiness, professionalism, business savvy and sound advice.
Raising her kids on one income, one would think mom would have been more prudent with her money. She was generous, always surprising you with a little gift and you knew not to mess with her about paying the check when you were out to dinner together, you would get the ‘stink eye’ if you even broached the subject.
Mom loved jewelry, buying it, altering it, and giving it away. She never had enough fingers for all the rings she acquired. Luckily, her daughters have fingers to spare so her jewels will sparkle on.
Carole is survived by her 3 witty, intelligent, and beautiful daughters Lynn, Tricia and Kelly and her artistic son Raymond. She was also blessed with two smart, handsome sons-in-law, Sam and JP. She also had too many grand dogs to count, she loved them all equally but Jackson she loved the most.
Moms 6 sister’s-in-law; Peggy, Pat, Maureen, Sue, Phyllis, and Sharon, she considered to be one of the best things she got out of her marriage (besides her four fabulous children).
Mom was always surrounded by friends, so many were close to her heart, there are too many to mention but please know she loved you all, just not equally.
We can assuredly say that everything Carole did, she did for those she loved, especially her children… and mostly Lynn.
She will be missed every hour of every day and every minute of every hour.
She always said she did not want a funeral or a wake, she disliked being the center of attention, so she asked that we have a celebration of her life, a big fun party with good food and music. Mom will get her life celebration in two states, both in Florida and Rhode Island once COVID 19 is behind us.
In lieu of flowers or donations, her family asks you to plant a deciduous tree in a location of your choosing.
We love you, Mom.
……..And if you must know, she took a pen to this tribute and it is being published with her full permission.
Online condolences maybe expressed at www.millenniumcremationservice.com.
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The service from Millennium was outstanding. Rachel was sweet, personable and very comforting. It was important to me that my dad was kept locally where I knew where he would be. Very nice facility, state of the art and quality of my fathers remains were so refined compared to my mothers years ago. I highly recommend this place for an affordable choice for your loved one. Thank you for making an already stressful event easy. With high regards, the Esposito and Keith Family.
Millennium Cremation provided a fantastic service to our family at a difficult time. Our beloved mother passed away in Vero Beach and the rest of the family was in other parts of the country. Due to the Covid health crisis, none of us could get to Vero Beach in person. That's where Millennium took over. They helped us manage everything, coordinated with a cemetery in Maine, managed the obituaries, expedited all the paperwork, and even delivered an important document locally that saved us days. Funeral director Rachel was a godsend, and she made it clear what she was going to do, and what we needed to do. If you know what you want, Millennium is highly recommended, and the savings versus the full service mortuaries is significant.