Irene B. (Rohan) O’Riordan of Waltham, passed away Saturday, January 27, 2024 at Sunrise Senior Living in Newton. She was 79.
Born on November 14, 1944 in Camp, County Kerry, Ireland, Irene was a daughter of the late Patrick and Mary (Fitzgerald) Rohan. At the age of sixteen, she demonstrated incredible determination and initiative by writing to her aunt in Waltham to request sponsorship and obtained the necessary immigration documents to create a better life for herself. With courage and resilience, Irene embarked on a journey to The United States all on her own. She completed her education at Waltham High School and laid a strong foundation for her future.
Irene's started her professional life working in the rectory at Our Lady Comforter of the Afflicted Church and later at Regis College before starting her career as a data processor at SmithKline in Waltham. She dedicated many years to her work there before retiring. Even in retirement, she continued to work part-time as a hostess at the Doubletree in Waltham.
In 1965 Irene met the love of her life, Jeremiah O’Riordan, while attending an Irish dance at the State Ballroom. Seven years later, they exchanged vows at Our Lady Comforter of the Afflicted Church and made Waltham their lifelong home. Together they built a beautiful family; their first miracle arrived with the birth of their son Justin followed by their daughter Colleen.
Family meant everything to Irene and she found great fulfillment in being a mother. While balancing a full-time job, she always prioritized being present for her children's lives. Irene actively participated as a dedicated class-mom, chaperoning countless school field trips and she often treated her kids and their friends to memorable outings at the local pool, bowling alley, or their favorite spot, Fun & Games in Framingham.
Trips to Ireland and England were among Irene's most treasured memories, as she would visit her sisters, brother, nieces, nephews, and shower them with love. She enjoyed dancing, singing, and finding solace in a good book. Above all else, spending quality time with her family brought her the greatest joy.
In addition to her husband Jeremiah, she leaves her children, Justin O’Riordan, and Colleen O’Riordan, both of Waltham; her siblings Maureen Mitchell, Sheila Hanway (Peter) and Michael Rohan, along with many nieces, nephews and their families.
Family and friends will honor and remember Irene’s life by gathering for calling hours in The Joyce Funeral Home, 245 Main Street (Rt. 20) Waltham on Friday, February 2nd from 4 to 7 p.m., and again at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday morning before leaving in procession to Our Lady Comforter of the Afflicted Church, 880 Trapelo Road, Waltham where her Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11:30 a.m. Burial will follow in Mount Feake Cemetery, Waltham.