Sunday, June 07, 2009

Obituary: Annabelle "Ann" (Simpa) Gallagher - Class of 1930

MADISON - Annabelle "Ann" Gallagher, age 97, died on Wednesday, June 3, 2009, at HospiceCare Inc. in Madison, surrounded by her family. She was born on April 4, 1912, in Madison, the daughter of Jacob and Anna Marie (Johnson) Simpa. In 1930, Ann graduated Summa Cum Laude from Central High School in Madison and in 1934, she graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin at Madison with a B.A. in Latin and a teaching certificate. After her graduation, although she was offered a teaching position at Wayland Academy in Beaver Dam, she declined it to care for her ailing mother. In 1936, Ann was hired as an analyst by the then-pilot program of the State of Wisconsin, Workers Compensation Commission, which at that time relied upon voluntary contributions from covered employers to fund employee benefits. On March 31, 1940, Ann married John F. Gallagher who, until his death in 1989, owned and operated the John Gallagher Company (established by his grandfather in 1880) with his brother, Jim. Ann left State employment in 1949 to care for her husband and growing family. Ann is survived by her sister, Mrs. Florence Doty of Bettendorf, Iowa; and her three daughters, Katharine Hilmer of Wilmington, Del., Sharon Gallagher of Oshkosh, and Pamela Gallagher of Madison; as well as her six grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Ann was a member of Holy Redeemer Church and Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church. She volunteered at UW Hospitals and the Madison Public Library. Ann was a lifelong learner who participated in the UW-Madison's guest student program for more than 20 years. Ann instilled her love of learning in her daughters and her grandchildren. Her wit, intelligence, generosity and strength will be greatly missed by her family and friends. The family is deeply grateful to the doctors and staff of St. Mary's Hospital and to HospiceCare Inc., for making Ann's last days so much easier. A Funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, June 9, 2009, at OUR LADY QUEEN OF PEACE CATHOLIC CHURCH. The family suggests that in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to HospiceCare Inc., 5395 E. Cheryl Parkway, Madison, WI 53711. Cress Funeral and Cremation Service 3610 Speedway Road (608) 238-3434

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on June 7, 2009

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