Cover photo for Mary C. O’Rourke's Obituary
Mary C. O’Rourke Profile Photo
1935 Mary 2015

Mary C. O’Rourke

November 13, 1935 — August 21, 2015

Mary O’Rourke, 79, of Jaffrey, New Hampshire, died on August 21, 2015 surrounded by her loving family.

She was born on November 13th, 1935 in Lynn, MA, a daughter of the late John and Jane (Kiefer) Leary III.

She and her two older sisters Alice and Cora and their mother Jane moved to Easton Pennsylvania in 1944.
Mary attended Easton High School and graduated from Gettysburg College with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. She earned a master’s degree in chemistry from the University of Minnesota, and met some wonderful, lifelong friends there.

She moved to New York in 1966 to take a job at Lederlie. She had a long and successful career working on various aspects of new pharmaceutical development, from synthetic work in the lab to preparing documents for the FDA for new drug applications. She developed an interest in how drugs interact with the environment. This led her to study ecology at Fordham.

She loved birdwatching, hiking, skiing at Mad River Glen in Vermont, camping at Lake George, gardening, and home-improvement projects. She was a longtime active member of the Ramapo Mountain Ski Club and made many close friends there. After retirement she moved to New Hampshire and enjoyed hiking Mt. Monadnock. She traveled to the Galapagos, Africa, and Newfoundland with her cousin, fellow adventurer, and beloved friend Lena. She hiked a large portion of the Appalachian Trail.

She was predeceased by her parents and her sister Cora.

Mary is survived by her daughter Lisa, her sister Alice, many cousins, nieces and nephews, and dear friends.

A Celebration of Mary’s life will be held at Cournoyer Funeral Home & Cremation Center, 33 River Street, Jaffrey, New Hampshire at 2 pm on Saturday, September 12th, 2015. Burial will be held at the convenience of the family in the family lot, St. Mary Cemetery, Lynn, MA.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Mary’s memory to the Ashuelot Valley Environmental Observatory, at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mary C. O’Rourke, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Starts at 2:00pm (Eastern time)

Cournoyer Funeral Home & Cremation Center

33 River Street, Jaffrey, NH 03452-0486

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