Mary Lee Leahy, 72, of Athens, IL, died at her Chicago home at 5:24am Wednesday, December 12, 2012. She was born April 28, 1940, in Chicago to Henry L. “Popsi” and Eva M. “Bambi” Cullen. She married Andrew J. Leahy on December 26, 1964, and he preceded her in death on July 20, 1986. She was also preceded in death by her parents and her aunt, Rosemary Comerford.
Surviving are two daughters, Anna Leahy (husband, Douglas Dechow) of Orange, CA, and Brigid Leahy of Springfield and one sister, Maggie Cullen of Springfield.
Mary Lee was an attorney, most recognized for the Supreme Court decision in Rutan v. Republican Party of Illinois limiting political patronage in employment practices. She was also a delegate to the 1970 Constitutional Convention and served as the Director of the Department of Children and Family Services. She headed Leahy Law Offices, served on the board of the Better Government Association, and was a member of the Illinois Bar Association and the Illinois Women’s Bar Association.
Mary Lee enjoyed travel, live theater, playing cards, and dinner out with friends.
Visitation: 3-7pm Monday, December 17, 2012, at Staab Funeral Home in Springfield with a prayer service at 3pm.
Funeral Mass: 10:00am Tuesday, December 18, 2012, at St. Joseph Church with Monsignor Thomas Holinga officiating. Burial will follow at Calvary Cemetery.
Mary Lee requested that contributions can be made by purchasing Anna Leahy’s book Constituents of Matter, finding Brigid Leahy “a nice man,” or donating to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network or Sojourn Shelter and Services in Springfield.