Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sunday's Obituary: Edward Fitzgerald


Edward Francis Fitzgerald, long-time Fresno County employee, was found dead in his home at 1023 N. Thorne Ave., apparently the victim of a heart attack.

The 89-year-old Fresnan will be buried in the I.O.O.F.Cemetery Thursday in the John N. Lisle Chapel.

He was born in Yolo County, and came to the Academy district east of Fresno in 1888 with his parents, Mr. and Mrs.Matthew Fitzgerald.  He attended school in Letcher, a foothill community.

A few years ago he made a return visit to the mine where the cottage in which he and his late wife, Mabel Viola McAboy, spent their honeymoon in 1901, still stands.

In later years he was to serve two terms as constable, run unsuccessfully for sheriff and county supervisor, work in the county welfare department and become clerk in the justice court.  He retired from the latter post in 1949.

Through the years he had been active with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Native Sons of the Golden West, Fresno Elks Lodge 439, Los Palmas Lodge 366 of the Masons and the High Twelve Club.

He leaves two daughters, Mrs. Clara M. Hunter and Mrs. Viola Crawford, and a son, Stanley, all of Fresno, and a brother, John in Woodland.  Five grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren also survive.

Edward Fitzgerald was the only great grandfather I had the honor of knowing and I remember him quite vividly, too.  Clara Hunter was my maternal grandmother.  I need to do more research on the 19 great-grandchildren because I have no idea where that many came from!

During a google search, I found some reference to Edward Fitzgerald with the Shaver Lake Fishing Club.  I asked my mother about it and while she doesn't remember anything specifically about his participation in the Fishing Club, she does remember going on family outings as a child to Shaver Lake.  I also found a picture of Ed Fitzgerald included with the Fishing Club historical website, and when I compare it to the obituary photo, I'm fairly convinced it's him.  And my mother agrees :-)

Ed Fitzgerald
Shaver Lake Fishing Club
Edward was born July 5, 1879 in Yolo County, California.  However, when I requested a copy of his birth record the County Recorder certified that there was no record of a birth found from 1/1/1878 to 12/31/1905.  Edward was the son of Mathew William Fitzgerald and Julia Horgan.  Edward died July 21, 1968.

Photo from obituary enlarged

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