Community

Odell Will Be Grand Marshal of St. Patrick’s Day Parade

3a6e2494180f72cad31d_Odell__2_.jpg
County Executive MaryEllen Odell Credits: Bob Dumas
3a6e2494180f72cad31d_Odell__2_.jpg

MAHOPAC, N.Y. - County Executive MaryEllen Odell has been named grand marshal for the 42nd annual Northern Westchester-Putnam St. Patrick’s Day parade, which will step off on Sunday, March 11, at 2 p.m. on Route 6 in Mahopac.

Irish blood runs thick through Odell’s veins with both of her parents being of Irish descent. Her maternal grandmother, Mary Agnes O’Neill, was from County Waterford, Ireland. Her paternal great-grandmother Julianne O’Neill, whom Odell refers to as Nanny, was from the County Cork, Ireland.

Julianne was an inspiration in Odell’s life. She was the oldest of 11 children. When she was 14 years old, her parents sent her to live with the Hogan family in the United States because of the famine in Ireland. She did not get to return to Ireland until she was in her 60s.

Sign Up for E-News

Julianne married Jack O’Brien and they had five children. They had nothing, but they had strong backs, willingness to work, faith, family and love of America.

As a child, Odell said she remembers “Nanny” having the grandchildren packing up their old clothes, toys and books to send to their cousins in Ireland. She also remembers her great-grandmother cherishing a framed tapestry of an Irish cottage by the sea alongside the Scared Heart of Jesus.

Born in Yonkers to Muriel Edith (nee Helwig) and Ronald Hicks, Odell is the eldest of four children. She was raised in Carmel with her siblings, Michelle, Brian and Laura. Wanting to give her children—Hope and David—the same type of upbringing, she bought her childhood home and raised her children there.

A Roman Catholic, Odell has been a congregant at St. James the Apostle Church for more than 50 years.

In 1995, Odell co-founded the Carmel Sports Association. She also became an active member of the Hamlet of Carmel Civic Association, the Carmel Industrial Development Agency and Putnam Economic Development Council. She sat on the executive board for the Gold Star Mothers statue in Putnam County Veterans Memorial Park, as well. She is also a member of the Fraternal Order of Police Stephen P. Driscoll Memorial Lodge No. 704.

Odell was named an honorary veteran by the Putnam County Joint Veterans Council in 2007 for her patriotism and advocacy for veterans’ services. Before his death in July 2016, James O’Neill named Odell an honorary member of the Knights of Columbus Our Lady of the Lakes Council 6318.

She is currently serving her second term as Putnam County executive. Prior to that, she served five years in the county legislature.

Odell said that being the 2018 grand marshal of the Putnam-Northern Westchester St. Patrick’s Parade is truly an honor and thanked the WestPut Setanta Gaelic Football Club for nominating her. 

Article courtesy of the Northern Westchester-Putnam St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Mahopac

Here's What You Missed Last Week

Last week, the Daily News ran a headline, “When is our father coming home?” This dealt with a person here illegally, married to an American woman with a family, who was arrested at an Army base while delivering pizza. You are supposed to think that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), under Trump, is tearing families apart. As usual, it was a crock of cow pies. It was ...

Watergate Analogies Apply to Obama, Not Trump

My liberal counterpart in this publication is about my age. Maybe I am the baby of the group, but we all have had the same seminal experiences of our youth: Vietnam, the civil rights movement and Watergate. These are what shaped our political perspectives.

Looking back, maybe, just maybe those who thought Nixon was really deserving of his fate cannot be faulted for thinking so. It was once ...

Reagan on Trump

The party of “Honest Abe” has now become the party of Dishonest Don, and what follows are some disturbing displays of a Republican Party that has become devoid of conscience:

• More than 4,600 American citizens dead in Puerto Rico—a postscript to the government’s abysmal response to the widespread devastation of Hurricane Maria; 
• The underhanded ...

The Rich Get Richer, and We’re Paying For It

According to a Harvard University study published late last year, most Americans believe that the richest 20 percent of Americans own just half of the nation’s wealth. Wrong! The top 20 percent own 93 percent of the nation’s wealth, and the top 1 percent own 40 percent of that wealth. Additionally, the top 10 percent of earners in 2017 took home more than half the nation’s ...

Competing—Against Yourself

This is the time of year when students are recognized at public ceremonies for notable achievements in their studies, their sports and in their extracurricular pursuits.

Where we live, there are awards in various sports that are named for our son, who also is memorialized by town ballfield Harrison Apar Field of Dreams and a charitable foundation of the same name.

Due to a rare dwarfism, ...

Honoring Our Veterans’ Freedom of Speech

Memorial Day is over, but writing about America’s veterans doesn’t have an expiration date.

My dad, George, was as proud a veteran as you’d meet. He served in the Army in World War II and loved our country no less than the next veteran. I am proud of him, as is my brother, Robert, who served in the Air Force.

Growing up, the one vacation we took each year was spent with ...

I Come from the Land Down Under

I know this is a family column, so I’m going to put this in as delicate terms as possible.

This morning I woke up and I knew, as sure as the sun shines over Bora Bora, that something was very, very wrong in that place in my body where the Bora Bora sun doesn’t shine.

It’s that place I used to refer to my daughter as her hoo-hoo. But it certainly wasn’t a happy ...

Mouthing Off

When I went for oral surgery last spring, the doctor told me he could only do one half of my mouth that day or I wouldn’t be able to eat for two weeks. Considering it was almost bathing suit season, I didn’t think that was necessarily a bad thing. But he convinced me otherwise, and told me if I was really gung ho about getting it all done, I could come back in a month or so to have ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_b4cc78dd32adbbf57c97_2018_hiv_testing_day_eng

Wed, June 27, 9:00 AM

Putnam County Department of Health, Brewster

PCDOH Free HIV Testing Day

Health & Wellness