Alice Mary Beary Breslin died Nov. 10, 2009, at Elmore Medical Center Nursing Home in Mountain Home, Idaho.
She was born April 11, 1914, in Brooklyn, N.Y., the sixth child of nine, to Thomas Beary of Mitchelstown, County Cork, Ireland, and Mary Allen Beary of Derk, County Limerick, Ireland.
Alice grew up mostly in Brooklyn, but she lived in Connecticut for her first school year, where she attended a one-room schoolhouse she loved to describe.
She helped her family struggle through the Great Depression, even after she met and married Edward Joseph Breslin in 1940 and started a new family that would eventually include 12 children.
She was Roman Catholic, baptized at St. Rose of Lima Church in Brooklyn in 1914, married at the Church of Mary Queen of Heaven in Brooklyn in 1940, sent all her children through Catholic schools, and traveled to Belgium to see her oldest son ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood in 1966.
In 1970, she helped organize a Senior Citizen Club in Far Rockaway, N.Y., and was president of the organization for five years.
She learned to paint landscapes and enjoyed writing poetry.
On March 28, 1985, Edward, her husband of 45 years, died in Far Rockaway, N.Y.
She had a wonderfully cheerful personality and was always optimistic about working through life's problems. In the personal history she wrote for her family she said, "Life must go on. You grasp for the nearest thread and start weaving. Help someone who needs you. Find a niche in which to fit. In spreading happiness, you find happiness. Above all, avoid self-pity."
On March 19, 1998, her oldest son, Michael Breslin, died in the Bronx, N.Y.
After years of deteriorating mental functioning, she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2000 and in 2003 she had to move into long-term care.
Alice is survived by 11 children: Edward Breslin of Niceville, Fla.; Mary Corr of Ridge, N.Y.; William Breslin of South Montrose, Pa.; James Breslin of Mountain Home; Alice Murphy of South Glens Falls, N.Y.; Francis Breslin of Albany, N.Y.; Vincent Breslin of Huachuca City, Ariz.; Paul Breslin of Hewlett, N.Y.; Elizabeth Lustberg of Tampa, Fla.; Grace Penzvalto of Avon, Ohio; and Geraldine Corso of Massapequa, N.Y. She leaves over 100 grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Final arrangements are being handled through Cloverdale Funeral Home in Boise. Condolences for the family may be left online at www. CloverdaleFuneralHome.com.