Pat Byrne moved to The Watermark at 3030 Park over a year ago with her husband Frank and is an enthusiastic ‘Watermarker’ living in our Independent Living community, Town Center. In fact, though legally blind, Pat has a clear, glowing vision of life, now and throughout her history, for her husband, family and extended family, career, and interests all add to its vivid color. Pat’s Irish heritage enhances that vision going back to her grandfather, one Jeremiah O’Donovan-Rossa. In the 1800’s, he was a noted leader of the Fenian movement for Irish freedom. Captured and imprisoned under Queen Victoria’s reign, he ultimately served out his sentence and then came to the States settling in Staten Island (which would later be Pat’s home). His biography can be found in the The Watermark at 3030 Park Library.
Later, Pat married Frank (a fellow Staten Islander) in 1955, and they raised six children. Along the way, she completed her college degree, with her career on hold while the children were small. Later Pad had a series of positions, all of which she regards with joy noting her ” terrific perks.” Positions included work with Doubleday Publishing, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and finally as Personnel Director for the Town of Westport.
In speaking about life at The Watermark, The Byrnes have found activities right for each of them. “They have wonderful programs,” says Pat. “I love the pool, and I focus on the musical things. We’re both members of the chorus, though we’re between gigs right now . . . But we’re very active here.”
Written by Resident Irene Backalenick