It is with tremendous grief that I must report our sister, our dearest friend, our long time housemate, and our favorite nature lover, Rosemary Ann Callahan, left her mortal body around 1 pm on Monday, November 12. She was 58. Ro had been battling metastatic breast cancer since 2015, and it's been a hard battle. At the end, she was surrounded by her loving family: her sister, Patricia Callahan Zindell, her niece, Sarah Toledo, her nephews, Matthew Toledo and Hunter Zindell, and her dear friends, Anne Moroz and Kathleen O'Malley. She is survived by her great-niece, Grace-Ann Toledo and her friend of 41 years, Pam Baldwin.
Originally a resident of Brooklyn, New York, Rosemary graduated Brooklyn College with a Bachelor of Arts degree. She moved to Maryland in 2000 and worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, eventually becoming their Liaison Officer for the Government Accountability Office. In 2018, Rosemary finally retired on disability.
Ro did not want a wake, conventional funeral, or religious service even though she was a deeply spiritual person. She always said she was more pagan than anything. She respected all gods and spiritual beliefs. Ro's church was the natural world, a place where she was always at home. In her youth, she traveled extensively, and loved visiting other States and other countries, especially Ireland, the country her family originated from. She loved Maryland's wilderness areas, especially at the Patuxent Wildlife Visitor Center, hiking and exploring, and loved to birdwatch there. She enjoyed everything about the great outdoors, especially the land surrounding our lake property. Even as her health failed, she continued to spend time outside, letting us know when she spotted the kingfishers, the bluebirds, the beavers, and the full moon rising over the lake.
Recently, we've had multiple sightings of bald eagles around at our home. Ro was delighted by every visit and felt each time they came, they were bestowing a blessing on us. We couldn't help but feel they were honoring her, inviting her to fly with them. On Monday afternoon, Rosemary finally joined them, leaving us to fly free forever.