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Yvonne Kavanagh


Ireland in the 1950s was under the strict control of heavy green moss on the stones and tree trunks throughout the island. In the early years of that decade, a number of children were born to proud moms. One of those moms, Anne Doherty gave birth to a little girl who never slowed enough to allow that moss to cling to her. The little girl was Yvonne.

When Yvonne was one year old, her country sent her to provide a bright light to a new family in Pittsburg, Kansas. She became the light of her new parents in Pittsburg, Tom and Cleo Kavanagh. She grew up in Pittsburg under the guidance of Tom and Cleo and provided guidance of her own to a brother, Peter, and little sister, Kathleen. Yvonne was known to all as Vonnie and many people knew her only as Vonnie.

Vonnie, after leaving Ireland grew up in Pittsburg, attended St. Mary's Grade School and graduated from Colgan High School in the class of 1971. She kept very close friends from Colgan, Chris, Kathy and Theresa, throughout her life as her friends, guides, and occasionally, accomplices.

She married and had three children, Kerri, Eddie, and Sara, with her husband Ed. They lived in Pittsburg, and for a couple of decades, she operated a daycare in her home and continued to hear from those children throughout her life and into their adult lives.

In the late 1990s after the end of her Pittsburg parents' lives, she decided to check in on her origin family back in Ireland. Sure enough, her mom Anne and her father had married and had six more children, Vonnie's brothers and sisters. They are Norahanne, Henry, Eamonn, Audrey Gerard and Claire. In 1998 Vonnie had a great reunion with them back in Ireland. Mom Anne missed Vonnie from 1954 until 1998 and reminded the brothers and sisters many times "You have an older sister and someday we will find her." Through Vonnie's persistence, her mother's repeated assurance to the children was realized. Vonnie's world was crushed twice with the deaths of her little sister, Kathleen, and extraordinary son, Eddie.

Vonnie leaves her husband, Ed, Girard, Kansas; brother, Peter Kavanagh, Dallas, Texas; her children Kerri, Miami, Oklahoma and Sara, Girard, Kansas. She leaves her grandchildren, Adrian Scroggins, Tyler Scroggins, Halle Scroggins, Gavin Scroggins, and Jordan Chatman, children of Kerri. Grandchildren, Jacob Cerutti, Emersyn Cerutti, and Adalyn Cerutti, children of Sara.

Vonnie and Ed most recently lived in Girard, Kansas. Vonnie left us on March 16, 2024, in the midst of preparations for Saint Patrick's Day celebrations. The next day, St. Patrick was heard to say to the angels "I don't see Vonnie down there at the party. Where is she?" They answered, "She's here, she's here!"

A celebration of her life will be held at a later date.