Eileen Marie O’Donnell Coogan, a longtime resident of Mount Kisco, died on March 16 at the Norwalk Hospital after a long and brave battle with multiple myeloma. She was 72.

She was born in Philadelphia on Dec. 11, 1946, to James L. and Lillian T. (McCarthy) O’Donnell. She was raised with her brother William and sister Carolyn in northeast Philadelphia, where she attended parochial school and enjoyed the typical pleasures of a teen in the 1950s and 1960s, including the show American Bandstand — once scoring a coveted spot on the televised program.

She attended the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and received her RN degree in 1967. In December 1966, she braved a blind date at the 01 Club fraternity with Robert Coogan, a student at UPenn. Bobber was smitten, history was made, and Dec. 3 would ever after be a celebrated date. The couple married on Feb. 3, 1968.

Bob’s military service brought the couple to Louisiana and Texas before they moved to Pleasant Valley, N.Y. Eileen worked at Vassar Brothers Hospital in Poughkeepsie while taking classes at area colleges. She had three children, Bernadette, Brendan, and Colin. The family moved to New Jersey, Indiana, and finally Mount Kisco, with Eileen taking courses in each new location and eventually earning her master’s in nursing administration.

She was a psychiatric nurse manager in the adolescent unit at New York Hospital in White Plains for many years before joining Fieldston Ethical Culture School in Riverdale, where she was respected and admired as an understanding but tough nurse and trusted student advisor for over 20 years. Throughout her life and career, Eileen was driven to do good, embarking on extended trips to El Salvador, Jamaica, and Panama to share her kind and competent nursing talents.

She was a principled woman brimming with love, and freely offered her time to important causes, especially those committed to the less fortunate, including the ACLU, women’s rights organizations, Earth Recovery Action, and the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation.

She embraced life and had many interests that she pursued with a generous and full heart, even after her cancer diagnosis in 2004. She was especially fond of the theater, picnics and outdoor concerts (including Woodstock in 1969), sunsets on the beach, and long bike rides. She was always eager to hear all about the lives of her friends and family or discuss books and current events over tea. She was an avid reader, a prolific baker, an enthusiastic youth sports fan, and an exquisite seamstress, but above all, she was an immensely loving and beloved wife, mother, and Nana. There was nothing Eileen treasured more than spending time with her husband, her children and their spouses, and her 10 grandchildren. She especially loved planning trips with her family and basked in these times spent together. Annual visits to Miami with Bob, large gatherings on Martha’s Vineyard, and special trips to Paris, Ireland, Italy, and Alaska, celebrating each grandchild’s tenth birthday will be memories cherished by all.

She was predeceased by her parents, and is survived by her husband of 51 years, Robert Coogan of Wilton; her daughter Bernadette Hess of Wilton; and sons Brendan Coogan of Martha’s Vineyard and Colin Coogan of New Canaan; her 10 grandchildren and many dear friends and colleagues.

To her family, Eileen was a rock, a compass and a light. Memories of her warmth and humor, the blessing of her love, and the sound of her gentle Irish laugh will forever live in their hearts.

Donations can be made to the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, https://endurance.themmrf.org/2019NYCHalf/CarolineHess.