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Mrs. Patricia (Kessler) McCarthy, 79, a prominent resident of the Heights section of the city and wife of former Wilkes-Barre City Councilman James J.F. McCarthy, passed into Eternal Life early Thursday morning, surrounded by her beloved family in the comfort of her residence following a lingering illness.
Born September 9, 1938 in Wilkes-Barre, she was a daughter to the late Harry and Thelma (Pritchard) Kessler. Educated in the city schools she was a graduate of the Grand Army of the Republic Memorial High School, Wilkes-Barre, and later furthered her education by attending both secretarial and beauty school. While matriculating at business school, Patty was asked to help teach a class in typing for her own prowess in learning the keyboard with ease.
Later in life, and upon the family's return to the Wyoming Valley following her husband's career in political broadcasting with the CBS News Network in the greater Washington D.C. area; together the couple owned and operated Jim McCarthy's Tavern on the Hill on East Northampton Street in the Heights section of the city for some forty years.
Patty or "Grammy "as she was so affectionately known, was the consummate hostess, working alongside her late husband, son and family members making their patrons feel like family with her distinct maternal persona. She always enjoyed entertaining her guests, and would often personally prepare her famous corned beef and cabbage for the many Saint Patrick's Day celebrations her family hosted honoring their Irish heritage.
Besides her devotion to the family business, Patty is remembered as being a loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend to all those she came in contact with.
She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, James J.F. McCarthy on January 8, 2013. At the time of "Gentleman Jim's" passing, the couple shared almost fifty-seven years of married life together. A year later, as a mother she would realize one of her most difficult tasks, burying one of her precious sons, Justin Sean McCarthy who passed on April 17, 2014. Her sister and "sidekick" at the tavern, Ms. Shirley A. Linker also passed on October 10, 2003, as well as Shirley's son, Patty's nephew Tony McDaniles and her sister Thelma Simpson.
Patty was not immune to the trials of this life, but always approached them with a smile, a bit of confidence and would even give her motherly advice to those who would listen.
Left to cherish her memory are her sons, James at home; Harry T. and his wife Anna Catherine and Timothy L. and his wife Melissa all of the Heights; Daughters-in-law, Josie McCarthy and Holly McCarthy, both of Wilkes-Barre; Grandchildren, including Seanna, Elysia, Justin Jr. Molly and Erin; Great-Grandchildren, Christopher, Connor, Harper, Emmett and Harper; Sister, Mrs. Susan D. Leiby and her husband Guy of Wilkes-Barre; Numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nieces and many wonderful friends and patrons.
Funeral services will be private and at the convenience of the family with no public calling hours, honoring Patty's request. A memorial service is being planned and will be announced at a future date. The Wilkes-Barre Heights location of the John V. Morris Family Funeral Homes Inc, 281 East Northampton Street is honored and humbled to care for our friend "Aunt Patty" and the boys at this time.