Courtney, Catherine 'Cait'

Sparkill, NY - Tappan Location

Catherine Mary 'Cait' Courtney, 94, of Sparkill, NY passed away peacefully on March 31, 2021 in Nyack Hospital. Daughter of Michael and Nora O’Connor (nèe Deady), Catherine was born in Maharees, Castlegregory, County Kerry, Ireland on July 9, 1926, one of three daughters and one son. Cait came to America in 1948, setting her roots in New York. She met John Courtney shortly after arrival in the U.S; they married in August 1949 and lived together happily for 50 years. John died in 1999, mourned by Cait and their three children, Neal, Nora and Peggy (twins) and Eileen.

Cait and John moved to Riverdale, NY from Washington Heights in 1962, and both became active members of their community. Cait was head waitress for the Cardinal Spellman Retreat House for over 40 years. She was also an active member of the Ladies’ Auxiliary serving as President for several years where they hosted many wonderful social events to raise money for the Passionists. She managed to work successfully in and out of the home. She was known for her diligence in cooking, baking, sewing, crocheting, knitting, organizing, all while being calm and humble and focused. Her sewing talent was legendary as she created costumes e.g., Scarlett O’Hara gowns for her granddaughters for Halloween, three matching floral dresses for herself and her twins so they could impress all who passed them as they walked down New York City streets, Flower Girl dresses, coats, sweaters, upholstery coverings, drapes and more. She was also known for her welcoming home in Riverdale, as all the children’s friends ran in and out. Visitors from Ireland and all over the world came for Irish scones, a roast beef with mashed potatoes dinner and a comfortable stayover.

Cait, known as Kay to her friends, was a longtime parishioner of St. Margaret’s of Cortona in Riverdale. In 2004, she moved to Thorpe Village in Sparkill, NY and quickly engaged with the activities and social life of the community. At Thorpe, Kay was Captain of the Social Committee, was involved in the annual Craft Fair, and crocheted home-made afghans every year to auction at the fair. The impressive proceeds were donated to the local fire departments.

Cait leaves behind her four children, Neal Courtney and wife Vivienne and children Caroline, Brian, John Paul and Thomas; Nora Doherty and husband Tom and children Julia, Deborah and Christine, and grandchildren Isabella and Wyatt; Margaret McLaughlin, whose husband Marty passed away in September 2018; and Eileen Pfingst and husband Marc and children Eric, Ryan and Katie. Predeceased are her brother Michael O’Connor and her sister Mary Liebrecht. She is survived by her sister Nora O’Neill.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at the Chapel of the Sacred Heart on the grounds of Thorpe Village in Sparkill, NY on Wednesday, April 7, 2021 at 11am. Burial at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Hawthorne, NY will follow. Due to COVID related restrictions, attendance at the Mass and visitation will be limited. A Mass and memorial service to celebrate Catherine’s life will be scheduled in the future. Visiting hours will be held on Tuesday, April 6th, 4-8pm at the Moritz Funeral Home, 98 Route 303 South, Tappan, NY. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Alzheimer’s Association of America (