Maureen McConnell passed away on Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020 at her home in Boca Grande.
Born on November 24, 1949, Maureen was a gentle soul, a loving wife, mother, grandmother and friend. She had a flair for style and loved decorating, travel, animals, and her family.
Her friends remember her as an excellent hostess who was kind and supportive to those in her circle. Maureen was born in Newark, NJ and lived in Morristown, NJ until her retirement. She held a degree in Computer Science and, prior to her retirement, successfully ran a department of programmers at ADP, a provider of human resources management software and services.
When not building her career and tending to her family, she enjoyed horseback riding and volunteered on the weekends to help medically challenged children learn how to ride safely. She continued to volunteer after moving to Florida with the Bit of Hope Ranch in Englewood.
She and her husband, Ched, moved to Boca Grande in 2008; first to Boca Grande Isles, and later to the Boca Grande Club. Maureen loved the Boca Grande community, and her lifelong commitment to conservation and wildlife found an outlet with the turtle patrol. Up each morning at dawn, her dedication and commitment inspired many.
A natural leader, she soon became the Island’s sea turtle permit holder with Florida Fish and Wildlife, responsible for coordinating the patrol and all sea turtle related activity on the island, a role she maintained for many years. In 2013 she, along with her husband and others, founded the Boca Grande Sea Turtle Association. She worked hard to ensure the fledgling organization was successful and remained on the board until her death.
She is also a lifetime member and past volunteer with the Boca Grande Historical Society and helped organize their successful 2015 Historic Home Tour.
Maureen and Ched traveled the world together, from Bora Bora, to Russia, through the Amazon jungle and more. Always up for an adventure, she loved to scuba dive and explore on horseback whenever possible. Her most recent trip, to Galapagos with her son Jim, indulged her love of nature and she brought back hundreds of incredible wildlife photos.
Maureen loved spending time with her family, and Christmas was a special, family centered time for her. She spent weeks preparing and joyfully decorating her home to welcome visiting family. Maureen is survived by her husband and the love of her life, Ched, her two sons Jim (Brooke) and Michael (Stephanie), her three stepchildren, Megan (Greg), Corey and Todd (Rachel), her two grandchildren, Parker and Amelia, two step grandchildren, Molly and Matthew, her brother Peter, her cat Rusty and the many friends she met along the way.
The family would like to thank everyone for their love and support. A memorial service will be held post-pandemic and additional details will be forthcoming.
In lieu of flowers, anyone who would like to make a tribute to Maureen’s life can make a donation to the Boca Grande Sea Turtle Association, PO Box 478, Boca Grande, FL 33921.