Mary A. Sweeney was born in Lowell on April 30th, 1927, The Daughter of Raymond A. Chandler and Ann V. (Kinney) Chandler. After the death of her mother in 1935, her father married Marietta (McNulty) Chandler, who gave birth to her brother Raymond. She attended Sacred heart Church. She also attended The Sacred Heart School, and then Lowell High School where she graduated in 1944. She graduated from Emmanuel College in 1948 with a B.A. in English. She earned her Master’s Degree in Education from Fitchburg State College.
Mary spent most of her 42 years as a middle school teacher in the Lowell Public School System teaching English, at the “Daley Junior High School” in the Highlands section of Lowell for the first 37 years, and ran the first middle school computer Lab in Lowell for her last 5 years. She also ran the school newspaper, the “Daley Dart” as part of a Business/ public School collaborative she ran “Tees Ink” in which the students designed, printed and sold printed tee shirts. Mary was a member of the Retired Educators Association of Massachusetts (REAM).”
Mary married Peter C. Sweeney on August 9th 1956 after a nine year courtship. This was a match made in Heaven, or rather church. As they were both very involved at the Sacred Heart Church and met there. In 1963 they moved over to the Immaculate Conception Parish, and became active there. When they first moved in Peter was teaching Confraternity of Christian Doctrine in the Parish, Mary became involved in the Holy Rosary Sodality and was the last Prefect of the Sodality at the Immaculate Conception for the 10 years before the Sodality reformed into the Immaculate Conception Woman’s Guild.
Mary was an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist at the Immaculate Conception and also provided communion to the residents at D’Youville Senior Care Center for many years. Peter and Mary were members of the Associates to the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity of Ottawa for the past 30 years.
Mary was also active in the Knights of Columbus, a constant support for both her son and the Order with her joyful smile and able hands willing to pitch in and help. The Knights have become a part of her family.
She is predeceased by her husband, Peter who died on Sept. 14th 2001, her parents, Raymond and Ann and her second mother, Marietta; her brother, Raymond Chandler and his beloved wife, Diane A. (Gilbert) Chandler, her cousins, Mary (McGuigan) Toohil, Rose (McGuigan) De Ponte, Elizabeth (McGuigan) Duffek, Alice (McGuigan) Clark and John McGuigan.
She is survived by her son, Richard J. Sweeney of Lowell, as well as her cousin, Helene Culbreth, and her cousins, Lisa and Robert Commacho, Noreen (Toohil) Marton and her husband, Peter and their children, Julie Hang and her husband, Dr. Steven Hang and their children, Brynn and James, Stephanie Marton and her husband, Collin Galster and their daughter, Emery Galster, Samantha Marton, Dr. Rebbeca Marton, and Patricia (Toohil) Leary and her family James Leary, Patrick Leary, and Katie Leary.
In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to either: the Immaculate Conception Building Fund, 3 Fayette Street, Lowell, MA 01852 or to: Immaculate Conception Conference- St. Vincent de Paul Society, 3 Fayette Street, Lowell, MA 01852 or to: D’Youville Senior Care Center, 981 Varnum Ave, Lowell, MA 01854.
While following social distancing guidelines and wearing a mask, all are welcome to attend her calling hours on Monday, May 24, 2021 from 1-5 p.m. at the Immaculate Conception Church, 144 East Merrimack Street, Lowell. Her funeral Mass will be offered at 5 p.m. at the end of the calling hours. Her burial will take place privately at St. Patrick Cemetery in Lowell. Arrangements by the Mahoney Funeral Home, 187 Nesmith Street, Lowell, 978-452-6361.