ForeverMissed
Elizabeth Jane Bosquez was born on January 9th, 1947 to Peter Francis McArdle and Georgiana Good. She was the eldest daughter among five sisters, with younger sisters named Rose, Nancy, Mary, and Jane. Her father Peter was born in 1917 in the South Bronx and her mother in 1920 also in the South Bronx.

Peter was a truck mechanic at National Gypsum before entering the Army as the US was entering WWII. He was one of a family of 9 siblings. Three brothers would serve in the war.  He enlisted in June of 1942, joining up with Battery D of the 175th Coast Artillery Battalion, and would see action in North Africa, Italy, and France. During Operation Dragoon, fought April 15th of 1944, known as a sister operation to the Normandy Invasion, he was awarded a Silver Star and Purple Heart for saving a number of his fellow soldiers wounded from a German bomb that struck the LST landing craft transporting them to the invasion. He towed multiple soldiers to shore that were wounded from the blast. He was discharged soon afterward  having recovered from his injuries. During his service, he inquired about a picture of a woman in the barracks posted by a fellow soldier Raymond Good also from the South Bronx, of his sister Georgiana and asked Raymond for permission to write her. He corresponded with Georgiana for the duration of his service and met her for the first time upon his return home. Georgiana was the youngest of 11 children. During the war, she worked at the A&P supermarket, candleing eggs (holding them up to the light to determine if chicken embryos had yet formed), and could hold a dozen eggs in her hands at a time to efficiently sort them. This was quite a delicate operation as breaking eggs was frowned upon among her peers at A&P.

Peter and Georgiana were married in 1945 and had their first child Elizabeth at the beginning of 1947. Peter would always find work to support his new family that would grow to five daughters over 10 years. He was employed at the Veterans Affairs hospital on Kingsbridge Road in The Bronx, serving as a plumber. During his tenure, he was exposed to radioactive chemicals used for early medical imaging efforts at the busy overtaxed VA hospital serving the dense population of returning veterans to NYC. Part of the workers protocol would be to wear radiation badges to measure cumulative exposure to radiation. After a certain level of exposure, the workers employed on a per diem basis, would be laid off upon hitting a prescribed threshold. Peter, always with breadwinning for his family at highest priority, along with some other workers would routinely leave their radiation badges in their lockers to extend the hours they were allowed to work to continue to earn for their families.

Peter started feeling quite ill in 1965 and got the attention of his family by developing a healthier diet, eating yogurt and bran instead of the usual fare of meat and potatoes washed down with common libations typical among Irish labor in the neighborhood. He became a patient in the hospital where he had worked, which was not very comforting having been witness to the overwhelmed resources of the hospital. He staged an escape from the hospital at the beginning of April 1967 to rejoin his family, certain that he would die with continued treatment there. He had been diagnosed with acute leukemia. The police came to return him to the VA hospital, but the family refused and admitted him to a private hospital. He would die a few weeks later after celebrating his 50th birthday. He and his brothers often joked they would never live to see 50, but he was happy to celebrate that birthday to exceed their morbid predictions, although would succumb to his illness soon after.

Georgiana would never quite adapt to the loss of her husband and the heavy responsibility of raising five daughters without their father and sole breadwinner of the family. She would follow him in passing a few years later in 1970. At the time of Georgiana's passing the 5 daughters were ages 13-23 in various stages of education. Elizabeth was thrust into an early matriarchy, and all the sisters would take part in care of each other. They lived at the family's home on Alexander Ave in Yonkers and various apartments in the Bainbridge neighborhood of the Bronx in various combinations of family and friends as they worked their way through school and into employment and self-sufficiency.

Elizabeth (known as Betty to friends and family), would meet George McAveney when visiting with friends in the "Irish Hill" section of Glen Spey, NY. The McAveney clan would assemble there at their Aunt Gene and Uncle Jim's house, and had mutual friends with the McArdles. Betty and George (both aged 19) were married in Glen Spey in 1966 and had their first child Peter in August of 1967. Geordie would be born a year later in November of 1968. The young family would live in The Bronx, Brooklyn, and Jersey City before settling back in Yonkers near Betty's childhood home.

Betty attended Saint Barnabas HS in the Bronx and made many lifetime friends. She was a National Honor Society member and was awarded a Regent’s Scholarship at graduation. As her 4 sisters followed in her steps At SBHS they would be compared to (sometimes disappointingly) their oldest sister’s academic prowess. Betty would later attend Lehman college juggling care for her family with her education and eventually would earn a Master's Degree in Education. Most of her career was spent teaching special education in the South Bronx. She started her teaching career at Our Lady of Victory, a Bronx catholic school that was closed due to financial difficulties with the Archdiocese of New York. The school, small but serving an impoverished neighborhood was desperately needed. For a year, help would come from CORE (Congress of Racial Equality), to open a small school in the neighborhood to serve these students. A New York Times article (https://www.nytimes.com/1977/09/13/archives/core-p...) describes the situation and mentions Betty specifically and includes a picture of her with a student. The specific mention in the article: "One teacher, Betty McAveney, even offered, to donate her salary in an effort to reduce the school's deficit". Despite her modest circumstances, Betty was always very committed to education in the South Bronx and would go on to enter the New York Board of Education's public-school system where she would spend the rest of her teaching career.

The family would enjoy the familiar and stable surroundings of Yonkers, NY moving from Bronx River Road to a house on Kimball Avenue which they would keep until Peter and Geordie were off to college. Betty and George divorced during their sons' high school years, and Betty remarried German Bosquez and moved to Kneeland Ave in Yonkers. She got involved in community theater and would act in and produce plays with Bronx based community groups, enjoying a new phase of her life with less pressure of family care. Her younger sisters all had families of their own and her sons Peter and Geordie were pursuing engineering degrees at RPI and MIT respectively, both living away on campus. A link here describes a play she produced that was staged at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center during a community theater showcase: (https://www.cinemavii.com/projects/Revivals/ADIHAN...). A lively group of friends in the theater group would enjoy events, travel, and theme parties, a number of which were hosted by Betty and German at the Kneeland Ave house.

Betty would retire from the New York Board of Education around 2008, coinciding with the end of her second and final marriage. She purchased a home in Fishkill, New York with sisters Mary and Jane (who had two daughters in the Fishkill school systems at the time). The house, a 6 bedroom Colonial built in 1829 was held by the family until December of 2019. In true McArdle fashion it housed many family members and friends of family over that time. Mary and Betty also owned condominiums in Florida, a home in North Carolina and would travel back and forth with the seasons over this time. Betty passed away on May 1st, 2020 as a result of a car accident near her home in Fernandina Beach, Florida.  A small service was held in Fernandina Beach featuring prayers, memories and Irish music. Accompanying her in cremation were a favorite quilt, a sun hat and a nosegay featuring 5 red roses and 2 purple lilies, a family tradition. Betty leaves behind her  2 sons, a future daughter-in- law,  many nieces and nephews and her 4 remaining sisters. She is missed.

The family will be arranging a memorial service in the New York area when circumstances allow. Please check back as we will continue to upload photos, videos, and stories and please participate with your thoughts and stories.




Posted by Megan McAveney on May 24, 2020
Peter and Geordie I am sorry for your loss. Many of my memories are gone after getting sick years ago. Don’t have good memories much of my young life. But your mother certainly did a fine job raising her sons. Definitely be remembered well in you
Was a wonderful tribute I listened to. Think you know when you’re a musician good things really hit you. And that did
Posted by Midge Pappas on May 22, 2020
Betty, I have many fond memories of you. The wonderful shows, the theme parties you graciously hosted at your Yonkers home, our talks about teaching and our frustrations with the NYC DOE.  The Eskimos have a saying, "Perhaps they are not really stars, but openings in the heaven where the love of our lost ones, pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy." When we look to the skies on a starry night, we'll feel you smiling down. May you rest in peace.  Midge, Charlie & Willie
Posted by Kate O’Reilly on May 21, 2020
As we were assigned to sit alphabetically in home room at St Barnabas HS, Betty (McArdle) sat in front of me (McCarthy). We were “locker mates” and Betty became my first new friend in high school.
This friendship led to many adventures and good times in “the country” (Glen Spey, NY) and who could forget the summer rental cottage at Rockaway (1965)
Betty was a bridesmaid at my wedding . She brought me solace at my husband’s funeral years later.
Godspeed Betty Boop!
Posted by Nataly Hoyt on May 20, 2020
Holding you close in my thoughts Geordie. Sorry for your loss
Posted by Doreen Triano on May 20, 2020
I will forever remember how you and German opened your home to the community theater family and friends and hosted all those theme parties. What fun and laughter we shared. You were a beautiful, gracious friend.  Rest in peace, Betty
Posted by George McAveney on May 20, 2020
Betty and I were married, still children, at the age of nineteen. We were immediately challenged by very adult responsibilities: her father’s illness and death, parenthood, and her mother’s and sisters’ situation. It quickly became apparent to me what a smart, responsible, and resourceful woman I had married.
Betty gave me two of the greatest gifts of my life: Peter and Geordie. I am forever thankful to her for them. And, I want them, and her family and friends, to know how sincerely sorry I am for their loss.
Posted by Jane Vandenbrul on May 20, 2020
Betty,
  When you & Mary packed the last boxes for your trip south, we
hugged goodbye at the door. As I walked to the car, I was already planning my visit to see your new house in No. Carolina. I didn't know then that it would be our last hug.
 I can remember the family lore that ,when I was little, you were "assigned" to me. The older sisters looked out for the young ones. I was still young when we lost both our parents, and you took responsibility for me then too, though you were barely an adult yourself. I'm sure that wasn't easy since you had two little boys of your own, but you persevered and set a good example for me.
 I remember when I got my first apartment, you brought me a beautiful rocking chair. In the years that followed, you were there for all the important moments of my life: bridesmaid in my wedding, godmother to Sarah. We
enjoyed so many wonderful vacations together, so many Thanksgivings &
backyard bbq's.
 There were times that each of us sisters needed help and you were always there to offer your time, money ,or emotional support. More than any of us, you kept alive the idea of the "sisterhood of five".
 Snippets of memories have been making me smile. Your assortment of hats, your willingness to have ice cream for dinner, your bargains from QVC, your
holiday toasts that reminded us all of the importance of family.
 When I think of you now, I picture you in your comfortable chair with a cup of tea and a good book,your precious Charlie at your side.When I'm missing you, I'll think of that last hug. And remember how lucky I am to have had you as my big sister.
                                With gratitude and love,
                                 Jane
Posted by Helene McAveney Hagen on May 19, 2020
I first met Betty when I was about eleven, and she soon became both family and friend. I am very thankful to have so many wonderful memories of her, and I hope the memories she made with all who grieve her bring comfort and consolation, smiles and even laughter-Most especially to Peter, Geordie, Mary, Nancy, Rose, and Jane.
Rest peacefully Betty, You are loved. 
Posted by Melissa Strotman McTierna... on May 19, 2020
You were a wonderful sister in law and a wonderful friend. ~Jim McTiernan Jr.
Posted by Patricia McAveney on May 19, 2020
Betty was my sister-in-law, friend and confidante. I always enjoyed spending time with her, George, Peter, Geordie and the McArdle sisters. I hold many fond memories of that treasured time when we were all young and finding our way in the world. Betty looks as young and pretty in her pictures as she did all those years ago. The McAveney family is saddened by her passing. I offer my sympathies and condolences to her beloved sons, Peter and Geordie, and to all of the McArdle family.
Posted by Mary Pearse on May 19, 2020
Sister Bea, how I miss you. You were the oldest and the trail blazer. You took the hits and made it easier for those of us coming up behind. You were the one we depended on - always there,no questions asked. We grew closer as adults. We lived together, laughed together, shared memories. Your sense of family was unparalleled. You became the Lucy to my Ethel. Don’t worry about your sons - they’ve stepped up and are holding us together. Don’t worry about Charlie. He misses you and waits for you to come home, but Papi and I’ve got his back. He’ll always have a family with us. Love you, sister sister.
Posted by Barbara Rakas on May 18, 2020
I remember all the fun we had at those parties! Rest in peace, Betty, and thanks for the great memories. Love, Barbara & Frank
Posted by German Bosquez on May 18, 2020
As memories come flooding back, I remember how much she loved family vacations at the Jersey shore, and on Thanksgiving having everybody come together for dinner and then play Trivial Pursuit. She loved her sisters, her sons, and her nieces and nephews with all her heart.
You've gone to heaven too soon. May you rest in peace,
German
Posted by Tom Cleary on May 17, 2020
I will always remember the generosity and compassion of my Aunt Betty. Trying to keep up with Peter and Geordie as a kid. Taking the family dog (Blackie) for walks at the reservoir. The trips to Tibbits for swimming. 

They’re are a few very personal things she did for me and our family that I will always remember and appreciate. Will always remember you fondly. Rest In Peace Aunt Betty. Love Tom
Posted by German Bosquez on May 17, 2020
I remember her loving nights at TNCP theater, where she served as show producer, President and on so many Boards. That was where we first met... She always had a wonderful smile and kind word for everyone, and was the voice of reason on many an occasion.
I shared a family photo from Mary's 50th birthday party and two others in the gallery.
Love and peace, sweet angel.
-German
Posted by Rose Cleary on May 17, 2020
For today, I remember the Family Feud audition. It was just one of the many crazy things we did as " The Sisters ". We were so sure of ourselves. Mary saying she practiced 'speed walking' in her spare time and all of us turning on poor Jane when she gave an answer out of left field. That's all i can come up with today, Betty. You were so kind to me and so damn bossy. I will love you and cherish you. Rose
Posted by Geordie McAveney on May 17, 2020
I’ve attached a video in the gallery. “Will ye go Lassie go?” It is one of Betty’s favorites - We played the Clancy Brothers version at her funeral service.

Betty loved this song,, she loved Wildflowers and for some unknown reason she loved rocks and stones. This video has them all . Most of all she loved her sisters. Go in peace and love. - Mary
  
             
Posted by Melissa Strotman McTierna... on May 16, 2020
I remember sitting on the roof in the old house and talking and laughing the night away. Good bye for now. I love you. Nancy

Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Megan McAveney on May 24, 2020
Peter and Geordie I am sorry for your loss. Many of my memories are gone after getting sick years ago. Don’t have good memories much of my young life. But your mother certainly did a fine job raising her sons. Definitely be remembered well in you
Was a wonderful tribute I listened to. Think you know when you’re a musician good things really hit you. And that did
Posted by Midge Pappas on May 22, 2020
Betty, I have many fond memories of you. The wonderful shows, the theme parties you graciously hosted at your Yonkers home, our talks about teaching and our frustrations with the NYC DOE.  The Eskimos have a saying, "Perhaps they are not really stars, but openings in the heaven where the love of our lost ones, pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy." When we look to the skies on a starry night, we'll feel you smiling down. May you rest in peace.  Midge, Charlie & Willie
Posted by Kate O’Reilly on May 21, 2020
As we were assigned to sit alphabetically in home room at St Barnabas HS, Betty (McArdle) sat in front of me (McCarthy). We were “locker mates” and Betty became my first new friend in high school.
This friendship led to many adventures and good times in “the country” (Glen Spey, NY) and who could forget the summer rental cottage at Rockaway (1965)
Betty was a bridesmaid at my wedding . She brought me solace at my husband’s funeral years later.
Godspeed Betty Boop!
Recent stories
Shared by Midge Pappas on May 20, 2020
 Betty, I have many fond memories of you.  The wonderful shows, the  theme parties you graciously hosted at your Yonkers home, our talks about teaching and our frustrations with the NYC DOE.    The Eskimos have a saying, "Perhaps they are not really stars, but openings in the heaven where the love of our lost ones, pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy."  When we look to the skies on a starry night, we'll feel you smiling down.  May you rest in peace.    Midge, Charlie & Willie

The BackRoom

Shared by Rose Cleary on May 18, 2020
I remember doing homework in the backroom. I was in 7th grade and you were in HS. You were taking Latin and I wanted to learn it too. Trying to get my hands on your Latin textbook .   You wanted to be grown up, sophisticated. I hated that. I wanted to be a kid. I remember having to go with you to the Mount St Michael dance . You told me you would kill me if I didn't go. Daddy wouldn't let you out of the house without me  .   You told me you were not leaving the dance until someone asked you "to dance" .We ended up walking home to Yonkers in the   snow.     On the subject of age.  When you were preparing to make your first holy Communion, you had religious instruction on Wednesdays at 2pm. You were in 2nd grade and I was in kindergarten. I went with you because we walked home from school together. So here I am in catechism class  every week and the payoff is, I don't get to make my first Communion because I'm only 5.    Speaking of the backroom. There was a shelf in there that we used for hats. At St Barnabas, we wore maroon berets. One morning, me and you were fighting over one of the hats, pulling it back and forth between us. Aunt Marge was there that day and she kicked the door with her foot to get us to stop. She was limping all over the place but we thought she was acting. It turned out her foot was broken.  I remember Daddy trying not to laugh when he found out.        Backroom stories  are starting to flood my brain. enough for today.     I love you my fearless Betty..            Rose         

Sisters' Voyage Down the Seine

Shared by Mary Pearse on May 17, 2020

Sister’s trip to France, 2017. Cruising down the Seine

Shared by Geordie McAveney on May 16, 2020
In August,2017 we embarked on an adventure to celebrate Betty’s 70th, Mary’s 65th, Jane’s 60th and our niece Eileen’s 35th birthday’s.


We visited the Normandy beaches and American cemetery, toured the embankments at Omaha, visited the graves and left roses for commemoration.