Roger F. O'Gara And Jean L. O'Gara

And Their Ancestors And Their Children

By Mike O'Gara, with help from siblings and other family members

Our dad, when he was young.
A note on the front seems to say "40",
so I'm guessing this picture,
and mom's at right, are from 1940.
Click for fullsize image.
Our mom, when she was young.
No date on the picture.
I don't remember ever seeing her
looking like this!
Click for fullsize image.

This started out as a simple page where family members could grab copies of pictures I brought home from mom's place, before and after she died.

But in the process of creating it, it became a memorial of my parents' lives -- who they were, and what their family was like.

I want future generations to know of my parents. How they lived and died, and where their remains may be found.

Perhaps someday someone will create pages like this for me, and perhaps link them to a copy of this one.   So that some small part of my own life will also be known by future generations.

I've created this site with photos and materials and suggestions from my siblings Tim, Catherine, and Maureen, and my wife Donna. This is really from all of us.

I know I've probably erred on the side of including too much. But this is the best chance we have of preserving so much that might otherwise be lost forever.

If anyone else in the family has images they'd like to share, please e-mail me to discuss adding them here, if there's room, or linking to your pages with family pictures on them. I'd like to build a linked net of information about our families, past and present. I have a few links already -- see the bottom of this page.

Generally the earlier images are shown first. I've included some information about earlier generations, where I felt some of you might want to copy those pictures as well. Most pictures are on other pages, which can be reached by links at the bottom of this page.

All the images displayed on the main pages are small "thumbnail" images.    To see the full-size images, click on a thumbnail image and a new page will open on top of the thumbnail page with the full-size picture. To get back to this page, close the new page with the larger image on it. If you need instructions regarding saving the images onto your PC, see the note at the bottom of this page.

I encourage all of our relatives to download as many of the full-size images as they wish, hopefully all of them.  I hope that the full-resolution copies of these pictures will be saved on many of our computers, to ensure against their loss and to increase their availability to future generations.

And so that our parents, and who they were, will be remembered.

In Loving Memory of Our Parents

I'm not good at saying "goodbye" to people I love.   I just can't.   So instead, I'll just talk about our parents a bit.

Mom and dad weren't perfect. But they were OUR mom and dad, and we were mostly blind to their human failings. As most children are.

They did what they thought was best for us, as best they were able, while dealing with their own personal difficulties along the way. Dad's early history certainly gave him a lot of demons to deal with.

They were just people trying to do the best they knew how, learning how to be parents as they went along. And sometimes being weak or misguided in that quest.

Like most children, we wished they'd raised us differently, both at the time and with an adult's hindsight. But they did the best they could. And I love them for that.

And you know what? We all turned out O.K. We're all good people who try to do what's right, and are productive members of society. They must have done a lot right.

There were times when we didn't know where the next meal was coming from. Or if it was even coming. But somehow we always, in the end, had food to eat that night. I think sometimes mom and dad didn't. But us kids did.

By the time I was a teenager there were clearly problems in their marriage. I know they'd considered separating at least once. It frightened us to see that. But I always knew they loved us, and would do the best they could to protect us.

It gives us all some comfort, now, to know that we were able to make both of their lives easier as age and illness took away their ability to cope. To be able to lay aside so many concerns, knowing your children are handling some of life's complexities that you no longer can, is a wonderful gift to receive. One that we were happy to give.

You don't need to be perfect, to be loved.  A good thing, too -- or none of us would be.

They weren't perfect.  But they were loved.  And still are, to this day.

To Mom and Dad:
We love you, and we will always miss you so very much!

From your sons and daughters -- Mike, Tim, Catherine, and Maureen.

Our father's headstone.
He was buried in a military cemetery.
Headstones don't hold enough words
to help remember a person.
I hope this website can help with that.
Maureen took this picture.
Click for fullsize image.
Our mother's headstone.
She was buried in a Catholic cemetery,
as she requested. The priest who read
the eulogy was her friend and knew her well.
Tim took this picture.
Click for fullsize image.

I don't know where dad's wedding ring is.
I think I saw it in mom's "precious stuff"
box that Tim still has.  She had dad's
"dog tag" from his WW II days in there.
She kept it all these years.
I have it now, and cherish it.
Click for fullsize image.
Here are mom's wedding rings.
I have them with me.
They're worn almost completely through.
I believe she wore them every day
of her life after they got married.
Mom still wore them after dad was gone.
She was wearing them when she died.
Click for fullsize image.

Basic data on who's who in all of this, for the generations who come after us:

Dad:  Roger Frederick O'Gara (1916 -- 1987)
Mom:  Jean Louise (Higgins) O'Gara (1917 -- 2002)
Us kids:
-- Michael O'Gara (1944 -- )
-- Timothy O'Gara (1948 -- )
-- Catherine (O'Gara) Stemley (1955 -- )
-- Maureen O'Gara (1962 -- )

Links to other pictures and family-information pages:

Our Parents' Ancestors -- Those Who Came Before Them

Our Parents, Before There Were Kids -- When Roger And Jean Were Young

Our Parents And Us Kids -- When The Whole Family Was Together

Sad Documents and Images -- Final Documents, Resting Places, and Memorabilia

Links to Other Family-Related Pages -- Connecting our Wider Family's Memories Together.
And also "Family Tree Diagram" Photos from Asilomar

How to save the full-size images onto your PC:

You should first have clicked on the thumbnail image, and your browser will be displaying the larger image in a new window.

Typically, depending on your browser, you then right-click on the the large image, select the "save picture as" choice, and save it to wherever you wish on your computer.   You definitely only want to save the full-size images, not the less-detailed thumbnail images.

Then close the window showing the full-size image, and you'll see the "thumbnails" page again.

Don't close the "thumbnails" page itself, that'll shut down your web browser. To go back to this page from one of those reached by the links above, just use the "back arrow" on your browser. I'm doing the site this way so that folks with dialup connections don't have to re-load the pages with all the thumbnail images every time they click to see a fullsize image.

Click here to send Mike O'Gara an e-mail.