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Mary Ann Farrell
August 27, 1935 - January 2, 2024
Family and friends are mourning the death of Mary Ann (Naugle) Farrell. After engaging in hand to hand combat with the capable and steadfast hospice team from Providence St. Jude’s for over 2 1/2 years, our heroine finally succumbed to being of a ripe old age. She departed to her heavenly home January 2, 2024.
Born Mary Ann Naugle in McKeesport, Pennsylvania on August 27, 1935 to parents John and Helen (Spontac) Naugle, she was their firstborn. Raised in Pennsylvania until her high school years, she was a beneficiary of her father’s spontaneous decision to escape the coal mines and move the family, which comprised her brother John Naugle and sister Ellen Rae (Naugle) Pantalone, west. Not to the Hills of Beverly, but Boyle Heights where Grandpa Naugle began working for Pabst Blue Ribbon. The family eventually settled in the city of Alhambra, California.
Mary Ann was an outstanding student and daughter who embraced the Southern California lifestyle, finding her way on many weekends to Santa Monica Beach via the historic Red Trolleys. Upon graduation from high school, Mary Ann was offered a scholarship to Occidental College, but ultimately declined the offer. Many have mused what havoc Mary Ann in cahoots with Auntie Mary Flinner, Auntie Kay Faley and Auntie Mary Buss could have caused in collegiate life, but those hijinks would have to wait until later.
Ever the achiever, Mary Ann accepted a job with the FBI in 1954 for an astounding $3175 per year to be a member of the prestigious and highly selective stenographer pool. Her offer letter was signed by none other than J. Edgar Hoover himself. At 200 words per minute, Mary Ann Naugle became a steno GOAT. The FBI became a second family and, indeed, Mary Ann did what every good stenographer in the day did, she wed the most eligible Special Agent in the Bureau, Robert B. (Bob) Farrell, Sr.
Following a glorious Roman Catholic nuptial mass in May of 1956 (same year Disneyland opened) at St. Vivian’s Cathedral Chapel with bridesmaids dressed in shades of sherbet, the couple initially resided in Los Angeles before the FBI transferred Bob to New York City so he could “defend democracy".
The young and dashing couple settled in Glen Oaks, New York and soon welcomed their first son, Robert B. Farrell, Jr. in 1957. The family was then joined by Edward J. Farrell (deceased), and shortly thereafter it was back to Los Angeles and California’s sunshine.
Once Bob Farrell had single-handedly ended the Cold War it was time for the family to move to Orange County and the burgeoning city of Anaheim, California. Bob joined the security division of Autonetics and Mary Ann set up house on Willow Street. Bobby and Eddie were followed in birth order by John J. Farrell and the small family was going strong.
By 1967, one more Farrell joined the family, a daughter, Anne Marie (Farrell) Scibelli and the completed family moved from Willow Street to 2248 Briarvale Ave., Anaheim, CA. Mary Ann and Bob would stay in that home for 40+ years.
Mary Ann was a consummate stay at home mom, especially in the early years before she learned to drive. Fun fact: Mary Ann never learned to swim but was a regular and avid aqua aerobics participant, albeit in the shallow end with a collection of floaties. As with her first home, Mary Ann welcomed all and encouraged all to visit. With regular frequency many visitors simply moved right in for extended stays. Mary Ann was a very traditional homemaker who amongst many other talents prided herself on making her children’s Halloween costumes.
The Farrells became an active parish family at St. Anthony Claret in Anaheim. Mary Ann would in the ensuing years embrace Catholic education for her children and grandchildren. Mary Ann enjoyed participating in her community and neighborhood. She spent many years, along with Bob, as active members of the Ex-FBI Society of Southern California. She was an accomplished volunteer and even a part time secretary at St. Anthony’s where she enjoyed every event, especially the annual school Fiesta.
Mary Ann and Bob enjoyed their years as sports parents and some of their happiest memories are with the families and friends they made throughout their childrens’ academic and athletic careers.
After many years of being a stay at home Mom, Mary Ann launched her second chapter as a legal secretary and worked tirelessly to provide justice for all, eventually retiring after 15 years.
Mary Ann loved nothing more than her grandchildren. She was keen to be involved in their lives and attended every event she could. Mary Ann loved to travel and relished every minute of any adventure. Mary Ann loved the beach and firmly believed that everyone looked better with “a little color” (aka sunburn) after a day in the sun. For many years the annual family vacation to Newport Beach was the absolute pinnacle of her summer, and in later years, the annual trip to the Alisal Guest Ranch was a yearly highlight that even a few broken ribs couldn’t slow down.
Later in life the nagging irritation of strokes, some little, some soul crushingly big, gradually dulled her fighting spirit as the lasting effects left her in constant pain. Even in her later years, Mary Ann enjoyed a good holiday and a fabulous Sunday brunch. She remained a devout Roman Catholic and it was her faith and her weekly recitation of the Rosary that brought her great solace in many turbulent years.
Mary Ann was lucky to have a tremendous support system of family and friends, and our family wishes to thank those who were so loyal and compassionate, especially at the end of her life.
She is predeceased by her husband of 54 years, Robert B. Farrell, her brother John Naugle, her son Edward J. Farrell and her grandson Christopher R. Farrell.
Mary Ann is survived and celebrated by her sister, Ellen (Naugle) Pantalone, children Robert B. (Bob) Farrell Jr. and Cathy (Caudle - deceased), John J. Farrell and Anne Marie (Farrell) and Chris Scibelli.
She was grandmother to Edward Jr and Michelle Farrell, Carey Lynn (Farrell) and Johnny Clay, Christopher Farrell (deceased), Katie (Farrell) and Michael Zimmerman, Colleen Farrell, Sean and Brittany Farrell, Courtney (Farrell) and Jon Barthlomew, Cameron Farrell and Regan Blasson, Morgan Farrell, Meghan Farrell, Jeffery Farrell, Joseph Scibelli and Katherine Scibelli.
She extended her legacy by being great grandmother to Kylah Clay, Aspen Clay, Zoe Clay, Langston Zimmerman, Kieran Farrell, Charlotte Zimmerman, Shelby Farrell, Holly Farrell and Conway Barthlomew.
She was also very fond of all her nieces and nephews and especially her Godchildren.
A requiem funeral mass of Christian burial will be held at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, 1441 W. Balboa Blvd., Newport Beach CA 92661 on Saturday, April 13 at 11:00 a.m. with a reception to follow in the the parish social hall. Mary Ann was a practical woman who disliked waste and fuss, we suggest if you feel compelled to honor her legacy please consider a donation to one of the worthy charities below or one that is near and dear to your generous heart.
1.) RAD Camp
RAD Camp offers awesome programs and camps for adults and children with developmental disabilities, much-deserved respite for their caregivers, and a life-changing volunteer experience for the local community. RAD has been a beloved part of the Farrell and Scibelli families for many years and your donation will go far for these campers in honor of Christopher Farrell and Mary Ann Farrell. Please donate via this website: https://radcamp.org/donate/. There is an area here where you can request the donation to be in honor and add a note.
2.) Amerman Family Foundation Dog Therapy Program at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
After a disastrous stroke that left Mary Ann in the hospital for 72 days, it was during this stay that Mary Ann was visited by a therapy dog. It would be many years later that Mary Ann would proudly become the grandmother to 4 different therapy dogs and would embrace their therapeutic efforts. Not especially a “dog person”, nonetheless Mary Ann did see the value in dog visits and was proud of efforts to bring comfort and compassion.
Please consider a donation to CHLA.org/GiveToDogTherapy. You can go online to make a donation or you can go old fashioned and send a check to CHLA Dog Therapy, 4650 Sunset Blvd, #170, Los Angeles, CA 90027 in honor of Mary Ann Farrell, dog grandmother to Mike, Ted, Frank and Freddy Scibelli.