Emily Ruth Martin O’Donnell passed away on February 17, 2010 at the age of 91. She was born in San Antonio, Texas, to Matilda Krueger Martin and Kurt Martin, and was the great-granddaughter of Mason pioneer and banker, Anna Martin.
Emily grew up in Mason, Texas, graduating from school there, and then going on to attend Texas Tech University. She left Texas Tech and moved to New York City where she lived with an aunt, and successfully pursued a modeling career with the John Robert Powers Modeling Agency. Longing to return to Texas, she came home to Mason and later married her long time friend John C. O’Donnell in 1941, shortly before John entered the U.S. Army. Emily traveled with John to many of the army bases where he was stationed before he was deployed for 18 months to Europe with General Patton’s 3rd
Army. After the war, they settled in Mason where they began ranching and rearing their family.
Emily was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother. She was a wonderful cook, like her mother, and always had the most festive celebrations for all holidays and birthdays for her family. She adored her grandchildren and great-grandchildren with only one problem - she didn’t get to see them enough! Emily was an avid bridge player for years and enjoyed her friends and the different bridge clubs of which she was a member for most of her life. She also enjoyed the game of croquet, having grown up playing with her parents, and shared that enthusiasm with her family. She loved playing cards with her family as well, and for those who didn’t play bridge, the game of Pitch was second best— morning, noon, and night around the breakfast room table with many a beautiful sunset as a backdrop, on which she would always comment.
Emily was preceded in death by her parents, and her brother William (Bill) Krueger Martin, Sr.
She is survived by her husband of 69 years, John C. O’Donnell; son John W. O’Donnell and wife Marie and grandson Christopher, son Jack O’Donnell and wife Beth and grandchildren Kathleen and Michael, and daughter Joan McCleary McFarland and grandson Ryan McCleary and wife Tracy. She is also survived by her two great-grandchildren, Christian and Erin McCleary.
The family would like to thank Dr. Philip Maple, Barbara Kane, and Rose Sanchez for all the years of wonderful care they gave her, Dr. Kevin Gallagher, Dr. Daniel Robertson, Dr. Kenneth Terrell, and the incredible staff of the Fredericksburg Hospital. The family would also like to thank Martha and Norman Neece and Donna Wilson for their loving care, as well as all the kind and wonderful staff of Country Home Health who took care of her for more than 10 years.
A private burial took place at Gooch Cemetery in Mason on February 20, 2010. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the charity of your choice.