Mary (Broderick) Coffey

Photo courtesy of Jim Sheaffer, Nebraska Gravestones
Photo courtesy of Jim Sheaffer, Nebraska Gravestones

(December 24, 1898 - February 12, 1965)

The Harrison Sun
February 18, 1965

Mary Coffey, County Clerk Since '38, Dies

Mary Coffey, 66, Sioux County Clerk since 1938, died quietly in her sleep at her home Friday night or early Sunday morning.

When she did not appear at her desk Saturday morning following the Lincoln holiday, her deputy Margaret Parmely notified a brother, John Broderick. When he found the house locked up he asked Corner W. E. Mumby and Sheriff Lew Sherrill to accompany him and entrance was made. Mrs. Coffey was found in bed. She had remarked Thursday afternoon before going home that she did not feel well. She has been in and out of the Memorial Hospital at Lusk several times in recent years with light strokes.

She was a faithful member of the Catholic Church at Harrison from where Rosary services were held at 7:30 Monday night. Funeral services with Requiem High Mass were held from the Church Tuesday morning at 11:00 with the Rev. Father Robert O'Neill officiating. Interment was beside her parents at the Catholic Cemetery at Harrison.

Mrs. Coffey was born December 24, 1898 at Portsmouth, Iowa, the daughter of Charles P. and Annie Griffin Broderick. The family moved to Sioux County in 1910 where Mr. Broderick bought a relinquishment and settled 17 miles southwest of Harrison. Mrs. Coffey graduated from Sioux County High School in Harrison in 1918.

Following graduation she first worked for County Judge Ralph Schnurr, then went to Omaha to work six months for Western Union. She returned to Harrison at the request of County Clerk Earl Cherry to work in his office and continued in that office under Arch Davis moving up as his deputy. When he decided not to run again and devote his time to abstracting, she became the Democratic candidate, was successful and has been in the office since.

She was married to John P. Coffey, an Irish immigrant, in October of 1939.

Though she has been ill in recent years, officials say she has kept faithfully to her job and kept records in the best of shape, and was pleasant and cheerful.

Surviving are five brothers: John of Harrison, Joe of San Diego, Calif., Mike of Scottsbluff, Charles of Eugene, Ore., and James of Washington, D. C. All but Charles were able to be here for the services. One sister, Ellen (Mrs. Charles Morrison), died in 1940.

Under Nebraska law, Margaret Parmely as deputy county clerk assumes the responsibilities of the office until such time as a successor is appointed by the board of county commissioners. It did not seem necessary or likely that the commissioner would meet before the regular time of the first Monday in March.

Meanwhile the State Auditor has been informed of the death and the office will be audited shortly.

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