On November 9, 1925, a newborn baby’s cry was heard outside the brick and metal gate of St. Peter’s Cemetery in Poughkeepsie, New York, where John McCormack and his family lived in the superintendent’s residence. His daughter, Irene, had entered the world.
On July 11, 2019, Irene left this world. Now she’s knocking on a more spiritual St. Peter’s Gate, waiting to be joined once again with her husband, Donald Crooks, with whom she was married for 60 years.
Together, Irene and Don raised nine children in San Jose, six of whom were born even after Irene was stricken by polio. Despite a lifelong battle with the effects of polio, Irene loved to dance.
She also liked to travel. One of her fondest memories was her trip two years ago to Ireland with six of her children.
Irene had a lifelong love of education and reading, and influenced generations of students in the St. Francis Cabrini catechism school, where she was the religious education coordinator.
Irene never forgot the birthdays of any of her children. More of a challenge were the birthdays of her 25 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren who make up the growing Crooks Clan. But she could remember all their names, and the walls of her home are covered with their photos.
Every clan needs a patriarch, and for the Crooks Clan it was, and in some sense still is, Don Crooks. But the clan’s matriarch was, and for quite some time will be, Irene. If Irene’s life could be summed up in one word, the word is Mother.
Irene Crooks grew up in a cemetery, and on July 18, 2019, Irene will be laid to rest in Los Gatos Memorial Cemetery next to Don. A funeral mass will be held that day at 10:30 a.m. at St Francis Cabrini Church in San Jose. A visitation and wake will be held July 17, 2019 at 7 p.m. at Darling & Fischer Chapel of the Hills, 615 N. Santa Cruz Av, Los Gatos.
The family suggests donations be made to ENDPOLIO Irene Crooks – Member #9815599
This Year the vaccination effort has provided children with hope against this terrible disease, down to 2 major countries (Pakistan and Afganistan). The biggest concern is cross border non-vaccinated travel so the end is close, but not quite here yet, countdown to history with Rotary and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Partners. Vaccines are at the core of our fight to #endpolio. Did you know if enough people in a community are immunized against polio, the virus will be deprived of susceptible hosts and will die out? Posted from EndPolioNow on July 11, 2019