Obituary of Helen Theresa Corcoran
On Tuesday, October 29, Helen Corcoran, loving mother of M.J. Corcoran Rankin and beloved grandmother of James Rankin died at the age of 97.
Helen was born on November 24, 1921, the daughter of Catherine and Michael Sheehan. The youngest of five sisters, she grew up in Brooklyn, New York. She married Joseph Corcoran of Brooklyn on August 21, 1943. She and her husband had one child, Mary Jean Corcoran.
Helen was a woman of tremendous humility, compassion and grace. She loved children, so much so that at the age of 42, she began her college career achieving her Masters in reading while beginning a 20-year odyssey teaching her beloved fourth graders about life and the love of reading.
Helen was adored by her students and colleagues alike. Her soft spoken, unassuming and gentle manner were cherished by friends and family. Her compassion underpinned a strong Catholic faith, and she would always strive to help others with a very generous spirit, sweet smile and loving heart. An impish, infectious grin reflected both her playfulness and purpose.
When her husband died in 1992, Helen moved to Hilton Head Island to be with her daughter M.J., son-in-law Howard Rankin and grandson James. She loved reading, the company of various canine companions over the years and donated to many military, animal-related, children’s and religious charities.
Helen was preceded in death by her husband Joseph, and her sisters, Margaret, Kathleen, Julia and Josephine.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, November 2 at Holy Family Catholic Church on Hilton Head Island at 10:00 a.m. A burial service will be conducted at Mount Cavalry Cemetery in Butler, New Jersey, on Wednesday, November 6 at 11:00 A.M.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent in her name to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital