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Obituary: Catherine Nolan Dillon

Catherine Nolan Dillon Passed Away Peacefully June 14

Catherine Nolan Dillon, 91, passed away peacefully on Flag Day, Friday, June 14—a very fitting date for a veteran of the U.S. Navy.

A lifelong resident of Long Island, Catherine was born to Jim and Agnes Daly Nolan in 1922. Over the next 11 years, she welcomed her best friends and younger sisters Mary (Fagan), Eileen (Gormley) and Patricia. Catherine was a graduate of Andrew Jackson High School and Grace Institute in New York City.

In July 1943, she joined the U.S. Navy WAVES. Stationed in Washington, D.C., Catherine worked as a cryptographer in the office of the Vice Chief of Naval Operations and attended George Washington University, receiving her A.A. degree in October 1945. She reached the rank of Yeoman 1st Class, receiving the American Theater and American Victory Medals. Despite her hectic schedule, she travelled home to her family at every opportunity. (Manhasset Press readers may recall reading the account of her trip home for Christmas 1944 in her 2011 front page article).

In 1946, she was honorably discharged from the Navy and returned home to continue her studies, earning her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Music Education from Columbia University. In 1947, she began her teaching career in the NYC public school system. She married Thomas Dillon in 1951, and over the next 10 years, they became the parents of Anne (“Nancy”) Alexander (Vincent), Catherine, Liza, James (Randi), and Margaret (“Mugsie”) Mauro (Frank). In 1973, the family moved to Manhasset, where Catherine became an active member of St. Mary’s Parish and the Manhasset community. She remained a member of Manhasset’s American Legion Post 304 until her death.

Her home was a frequent gathering place for her extended family and friends. Sunday dinners for 20 or more were a common occurrence. She hosted the Hillcrest Avenue Christmas Party for more than 25 years, an annual St. Patrick’s Day party (featuring a spirited sing-along—complete with bagpipes, accordion, and banjo), and an annual dinner celebrating the culture of Barbados, home to two of her dearest friends. She frequently combined her clever wit and musical talents, rewriting the lyrics of a popular song to salute the guest of honor at many a special occasion. All involved were entertained as a roomful of people belted out her personalized (and very funny) parodies.

Longtime supporters of the rights of the unborn, Catherine and Tom put their beliefs into action. For many years, they opened their home to numerous young women in crisis pregnancies with otherwise unacceptable alternatives.

Catherine retired from the classroom in June of 1997. During her almost 50-year career, she taught in NYC public schools, at St. John’s University and at Sacred Heart (Cambria Heights) and St. Bernard’s (Levittown) elementary schools. In her retirement, she gave private piano lessons in her home, continuing to do so until just a few months ago. Many a Manhasset parent will recall her students’ considerable talents, featured at Spring and Christmas recitals every year. Her students brought her much joy, and she actively followed their academic and athletic careers through the pages of the Manhasset Press.

She is survived by her sister, Patricia Nolan, her five children, and her nine grandchildren.


Negotiations are currently underway between the Village of Farmingdale and members of the local CSEA labor union. After a closed door executive session meeting, on Jan. 6, village trustees met with members of the labor counsel to iron out terms of a new contract proposal, which they said will hopefully meet the fancy of union leaders. 


“We have sent our proposals out there,” said Farmingdale Mayor Ralph Ekstrand, “we are just waiting for the CSEA membership to approve it.”

A new Child Care Centerfor children ages eight weeks through Pre-K—opened at Farmingdale State College this week, which will be open to the community and the college campus. 


“The College owes a great deal of thanks to everyone involved in this project,” said Farmingdale State College President Hubert Keen. “This center provides a safe and nurturing environment for the children of our students, faculty and staff.

Especially for our students, the availability of quality child care can determine whether or not they are able to complete their education.”


On Saturday, November 9, the MHS Girls Swim Team competed in the Nassau County Team Championships. After a strong preliminary performance on Friday, the girls had their sights set on swimming even faster on Saturday at the finals. On Friday, Manhasset qualified 14 individual swims in the top 10 and all three relays. The team also had an additional 7 swims in the consolation finals (places 11-20). On Saturday, the top 20 individuals and relays compete in each event, all finishers scoring points towards their team total.

In the championship’s opening event, the 200 yd. medley relay team from Manhasset set the tone for what turned out to be a historic day in Manhasset Girls Swimming. The relay team of Grace Kenlon, Allegra Sodi, Megan Smith and Meredith Johnson finished third and set a new school record time of 1:51.96, also qualifying for the New York State Championships.

Second at Counties, State Quals as Weilep Qualifies for State Meet

The Indians' regular season came to a close recently, but not before the boys locked up several more post-season honors to complete a highly successful campaign that brought an undefeated season as well as Division and Conference Championships. Manhasset headed into the post-season with high aspirations and battled it out with rival Wantagh High School for two weekends in a row—at both the Class Country Championships and the State Qualification race—coming up just short on both occasions, but achieving many milestones along the way.


Champions for Charity

Thursday, December 5

Mens' Club Luncheon

Thursday, December 5

Holiday Tree Lighting

Friday, December 6


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