A Throggs Neck woman was killed late last month as the result of an vehicular accident on East Tremont Avenue.
Mary Flanagan was born on October 13, 1960 and attended Preston High School in the mid to late 1970s. She lived at 2917 Milton Avenue.
“She was a very kind, good hearted person who always helped others,” said Diane Dougherty, a former Throggs Neck resident and member of St. Benedict’s Church who knew Flanagan for the better part of 25 years.
Flanagan was a long-tenured parishioner at St. Benedict’s Church. According to Dougherty, Flanagan would often congregate with other church members and residents outside the church after services.
Mary was also an activist who worked with animals pet shelters and was involved in the Humane Society located on East 59th Street.
She also worked at JC Penney within the Mall at Bay Plaza in Co-op City.
“She was most certainly the church-going type – and it’s such a shame that such a kind individual could go in such a tragic way,” Dougherty added.
Diane added that Preston High School is currently planning to curate a plaque or monument in commemoration of Flanagan’s life and dedication to the community.
Others who knew Mary described her as a ‘sweet soul’ who had a ‘beautiful smile’ and ‘gentle ways’ about her.
“Mary was a sweet, wonderful, gentle woman who cared about others and was very faithful to us here,” said Father Stephen Norton from St. Benedict’s Church, who knew Mary for over 30 years. “You don’t meet people like Mary very often – she was just a loving, kind-hearted individual. I don’t remember her ever swearing or even yelling at anyone.”
Father Norton recalled a time when Flanagan had planted flowers in her yard, but had extra flowers. She had asked Norton if she could plant the remaining flowers outside of St. Benedict’s, to which he said, “of course!” Norton also recalled Mary planting the flowers saying that she didn’t want any credit or accolades for her gesture.
Flanagan also took part in the church’s Secret Santa each year along with other holiday festivities.
On the evening of Monday, February 24, at approximately 7:08 p.m., Flanagan was struck by a Sedan while she was crossing eastbound at the Sampson Avenue and East Tremont Avenue intersection.
She was discovered by EMS, both unconscious and unresponsive, with trauma to the head, before she was transported to NYC Health + Hospitals/Jacobi, where she was later pronounced deceased.
Further investigation conducted by the NYPD Highway District’s Collision revealed that a 2009 Mazda 3 Sedan was traveling southbound on East Tremont Avenue when it struck Flanagan. The operator of the vehicle remained at the scene.
“It’s just very sad – especially considering she was so dedicated to helping the community,” said co-founder of the Bronx Animal Shelter Endeavor Donna Dechiaro, who didn’t know Mary personally but knew of her work and heard about the tragedy.
“It’s a big loss and (our) hearts go out to Mary’s family and friends,” Dechiaro added. “It was obvious that she did good work and was very appreciated in the community.”
Mary was never married and didn’t have any children, but is survived by her sister Elizabeth who lives in upstate New York.
Elizabeth set up the funeral mass for Flanagan, which received a massive turn out of a few hundred people. It was held on Monday, March 2 at St. Benedict’s Church, after visitation services were held at Schuyler Hill Funeral Home.
Flanagan was interred after the funeral mass at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Hawthorne, NY, with her parents.