John Robert “Bob” McDonnell, 84, of Greenfield Twp. and a prominent Carbondale businessman, died Saturday April 18th at the Forest City Nursing Center. His wife, the former Dolores Para died in September 2003.
Born in Carbondale, son of the late Francis and Gertrude R. Moran McDonnell, he was a member of Saint Rose of Lima Church, Carbondale. He was a graduate of Benjamin Franklin High School, Carbondale. He was a US Army veteran of the Korean War. In 1956, he founded McDonnell’s Family Restaurant on Church Street in Carbondale. Bob overcame much adversity over the years, including a fire that destroyed his first location. In 1969, he moved to the current 6th Ave and Main Street location that has been a landmark in Carbondale for the past 50 years. He also operated McDonnell’s Grove in Greenfield Township, a fixture of summer clambakes, corporate outings, and family gatherings. He was a member of the Sunset Lodge Hunting Club, Equinunk; Vice President of the former Community Bank & Trust Company; former board member of the Former St. Joseph’s Hospital, Carbondale and the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce. For many years, he was instrumental in raising funds for the Downtown Carbondale Christmas Lights. He was an avid hunter who enjoyed traveling across the country and Canada with his son to hunt. He was affectionately known as “Boboo” to his grandchildren.
Since Bob’s passing, we (the family) have heard from people from all walks of life: family, customers, former employees, friends, other business people, and hunting buddies. We are still piecing together how big of an impression Bob made and how many lives he influenced or changed. We keep hearing recurring words like icon, legend, pillar of the community, role model, humble, true gentleman, and friend. It shows how Bob lived his life. Hard work, dedication, kindness, faith, leading by example, and patience were all his endearing qualities. We had the pleasure of calling him by many titles: boss, best friend, partner, mentor, hunting buddy, but the best title of all was Dad.
Surviving are two daughters: Kelly Mulroy, Sea Girt, NJ; Beth Cintron and husband Rick, Scotch Plains, NJ; a son: Robert McDonnell and wife Felicia, Greenfield Twp.; six grandchildren: Justin, Haley, Kiera, and Erin Mulroy; Zofia Cintron; and Everly Marie McDonnell; and several nieces and nephews.
He was also preceded in death by a sister: Gertrude; and two brothers: Patrick and Francis.
Due to current public health policy, private funeral services will be held with interment in Our Mother of Sorrows Cemetery, Finch Hill. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. Arrangements by the Brennan & Brennan Funeral Home, Inc., 55 Lincoln Avenue, Carbondale.
Memorial donations may be made to the St. Rose of Lima Church Tower Fund, 6 N. Church St., Carbondale, PA 18407 or Metavivors of New Jersey at https://secure.metavivor.org/page/contribute/metavivors-of-nj
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St. Rose Church Tower Fund
6 North Church Street, Carbondale PA 18407
Metavivors of New Jersey