Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Marjorie Molony was innovative school volunteer

'Woman of the Year' in 1969

By Nicole Hamilton
The Cincinnati Enquirer

CRESTVIEW HILLS - Marjorie Molony made volunteering a career.

In 1969, The Cincinnati Enquirer named her a "Woman of the Year" for creating a model teacher-assistance program at Covington Catholic High School.

To help teachers focus more on their jobs as educators, Molony organized 65 volunteers to assist Covington Catholic teachers with administrative responsibilities - from photocopying to running errands and grading papers.

"I called her a 'transitional mom,' " said her son, Kevin Molony of Fort Mitchell. "She sort of bridged the gap between the stay-at-home moms of the '50s and '60s, and today's career moms."

Marjorie Molony died Wednesday at St. Elizabeth Medical Center North's Hospice Unit after a long illness. The Crestview Hills resident was 83.

The program she established at Covington Catholic served as a model for programs at other area schools, and Molony spoke at conferences and appeared on television about the effort.

A native of Covington, she graduated from Villa Madonna College (now Thomas More College), and worked for United Press International in Cleveland and later at the Cincinnati Post as a copy editor.

She left journalism in 1947 and took an active approach to raising her five sons, volunteering at their schools and supporting their athletic and academic endeavors.

"She was a soccer mom before that term was even invented," said her son. "And she used to tell us, 'You've always got a friend with you if you have a book.' "

She also volunteered for special-needs children at the Blessed Sacrament preschool in Fort Mitchell..

She was a member of Blessed Sacrament Church in Fort Mitchell, and made a pilgrimage to Medjugorje, the village in Bosnia-Herzegovina where an apparition of the Virgin Mary was believed to appear.

Besides her son, survivors include her husband, Walter J. Molony of Crestview Hills; four other sons, Walter III of Annandale, Va., Dr. Michael of Villa Hills, Timothy of Edgewood and David of Florence; four brothers, T. Shelley and Morgan Moore, both of Lakeside Park, John Moore of Fort Wright, and Phillip Moore of Erlanger; two sisters, Fern Schweer of Erlanger and Marie Nieman of Fort Mitchell; 14 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

Services have been held.

Burial was in St. Mary's Cemetery, Fort Mitchell.

Memorials: Redwood School and Rehabilitation Center, 71 Orphanage Road, Fort Mitchell, KY 41017-9990; Covington Catholic High School, 1600 Dixie Hwy., Park Hills, KY, 41011; or in the form of Masses.


E-mail nhamilton@enquirer.com

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