Margaret Eileen (O'Connell) Solecki - [February 20, 1923 - April 14, 2009] Print this page

Margaret Eileen (O'Connell) Solecki, wife of the late Captain Paul F. Solecki, US Army (retired) died peacefully on Tuesday, April 14, 2009 surrounded by loving family.

Daughter of the late John and Nellie O'Connell, she was born at home in Roslindale, Massachusetts on February 20, 1923.

Eileen moved to Newport at the age of 5, and after graduating from Rogers High School she worked for the telephone company for several years.

Following WWII she and her husband were stationed at numerous army bases including Monterey, CA, Fort Stewart, GA and Wiesbaden, Germany.

After her husband retired from the service they returned with their children to Newport where Eileen always felt at home. She worked for a local dentist, Dr. Mike Brennan for many years before owning and operating the Ailinas Inn, a Bed & Breakfast at 27 Mann Avenue, her family home. Travelers returned there year after year to the comfort of a cozy home and ever cheerful hostess.

Always a social butterfly, Eileen possessed the gift of gab like no other. She had an incredible memory for detail and loved to tell stories of her childhood and travels - stories that never failed to entertain her listeners. She loved to read and enjoyed her many trips, especially to Hawaii and Ireland. Eileen was a long-time member and stockholder of Gooseberry Beach, often spending long days there playing Scrabble with her dear friends.

She was also an active member of the Democratic City Committee and poll supervisor for the City of Newport Canvassing Authority. She was also a member of St. Joseph's Parish in Newport where she taught CCD. Eileen truly loved life and she lived it to its fullest.

She was devoted to her children and was a wonderful grandmother to her thirteen grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, all of whom were dear to her heart.

She is survived by three sons,

  • Paul and his wife, Kathleen of Portsmouth,
  • Peter and his wife Nancy of San Diego, CA, and
  • Brian and his wife Bets Needham of Pleasant Hill, OR,
and two daughters,
  • Mary Solecki-Steege and her husband Dave of Mahtomedi, MN, and
  • Eileen Ruhl and her husband John of Canton, MA.

She is also survived by thirteen grandchildren, Aniela, Brian, Brendan, Paul, Kevin, John, Patrick, Kenyon, Nina, Jonah, Jocelyn, Sarah & Kathryn and three great-grandchildren Hannah, Ryan & Brooke. She is the sister of Robert and Sue O'Connell, William O'Connell, and the late John O'Connell. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews.

Calling hours will be held on Friday, April 17, 2009 at Memorial Funeral Home, 375 Broadway, Newport from 4-8 pm.

Her funeral will be held Saturday April 18, 2009 at 9:00 am from the Memorial Funeral Home, with a Mass of Christian burial at 10:00 in St. Joseph's Church, Broadway at Mann Avenue, Newport.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in her memory to VNS of Newport and Bristol Counties, 1184 East Main Road, Portsmouth 02871 or the Grand Islander Activities Fund, 333 Green End Ave, Middletown, RI 02842.