Eleanor Louise Conroy McGrath of Simsbury, Conn. died peacefully on Jan. 11. She was 95.

She was born on March 19, 1927 in Island Pond, Vt. She was the daughter of Eleanor Sloan Conroy and Benjamin J. Conroy Jr.

At the age of five, she moved with her parents and two older brothers to her father’s ancestral home in Brooklyn, N.Y. She attended Holy Innocents School, where she met her future husband, the late A. Donald McGrath. While in her teens, Eleanor had a brief modelling career and studied dance, at which she excelled and enjoyed all her life. She was further educated at Sacred Heart schools and completed her education at Duchesne Finishing School.

In 1951, she married her childhood sweetheart Donald McGrath in Brooklyn, N.Y. Following a honeymoon to Nantucket, a place that remained special to her all her life, they moved to Hartford, Conn. In 1954 they moved to Simsbury, Conn. where they raised their four daughters.

Family was at the center of Eleanor and Don’s lives. Together they introduced their daughters to skiing, sailing and swimming. She saw motherhood as her vocation, whether she was reading bedtime Bible stories or doing art projects with her daughters. She was a compassionate person always available to listen to those who came to her for advice. With her husband, she taught her daughters concern for others through the many kind actions she performed, with a particular concern for people who were alone or marginalized in any way.

In 1964 Eleanor and Don began bringing their family to Martha’s Vineyard for summer vacations, which led to the building of a home for their retirement and many vacations with their daughters and extended family. They built a cherished network of friends there. During this time Eleanor took painting classes and completed a number of scenic paintings that now hang in her daughters’ homes. She had a love for writing and wrote poetry all her life. She was a literacy volunteer and also read books to children at the Martha’s Vineyard Boys & Girls Club.

She also developed a circle of good friends on Marco Island, Fla. where she and her husband spent the winter months in retirement and where she was a member of the Art League.

In addition to her husband, Eleanor was predeceased by her brothers Benjamin J. Conroy Jr. and John S. Conroy. She leaves her daughters, Patricia McGrath of Marshfield, Susan McGrath and her husband Jack of Old Saybrook, Conn; Shelaugh McGrath of Avon, Conn.; and Ellen Skaret and her husband Steven of Simsbury, Conn.; three grandchildren, Meaghan Takla and her husband Paul, Julia McGrath and Molly McGrath; and two great-grandchildren, Charlie and Clara Takla. She was also blessed with many nieces and nephews

Visiting hours will be held on Friday, Jan. 20 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Hayes-Huling and Carmon Funeral Home in Granby, Conn. The funeral mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 21 at St. Catherine of Sienna Church in West Simsbury, Conn. Interment will follow at Simsbury Cemetery. 

Memorial donations may be made to the Martha’s Vineyard Boys and Girls Club, 44 Robinson Road, Edgartown, MA 02539, c/o Dhakir Warren, executive director.

Her family wishes to thank the McLean staff; Seniors Helping Seniors; ComForCare, in particular Eleanor’s main caregiver Vernette, as well as Judy and Joy; Johnson Memorial Wound Care Center and McLean Home and Hospice, for their wonderful care, especially in the last four years.