EDNA ANDREA PARKER (nee Mulvihill) – died on June 5, 2022 in Providence.
Born April 25, 1928 in Orange, New Jersey to the late John Mulvihill and Louise Ebele Mulvihill. She was the youngest of 5 children, and predeceased by her siblings Muriel, Raymond, Walter (Bud), and Lawrence.
Edna graduated from Orange High School Class of 1946 and went on to attend Secretarial School in Manhattan, and she worked briefly as secretary-receptionist until 1949. She enjoyed 75 years of marriage to William Henry Parker (LCDR, Ret) of Orange, NJ.
The couple met in junior high school and started dating when Edna was 13. They were married TWICE. While “Billy” was stationed in Charleston, SC, Edna flew down for a visit. The couple was married on September 2, 1947 in Charleston. Upon her return to New Jersey and announcement, Edna’s mother insisted she have a “proper” ceremony to include family and friends. The wedding was scheduled and took place on December 27, 1947 in Orange, NJ. Unfortunately, many of the guests were unable to attend as the Great Blizzard of 1947 that began on Christmas day brought 26 inches of snow to the area and impeded travel.
Edna dedicated her life to the welfare of her family. She was an active Navy wife and supporter of her husband’s career. The family moved to Portsmouth in 1962 where Edna immediately fell in love with Aquidneck Island. During their years in Middletown, Edna worked in the School Superintendent’s office on Green End Avenue with Superintendent Joseph Gaudet. She particularly enjoyed hosting the families of foreign officers who came each year to the Naval War College. She stayed in touch with many of them after they returned home and, in later years, Edna and Bill traveled to Europe to visit with several of those families.
In 1978 Bill was recruited for a position in Harrisburg, PA and they moved again. Following his retirement in 1992, Edna was determined to come back to Newport and “never cross the Bridge again”. They bought a house in the new Sea Meadow neighborhood where she was a vocal member of the homeowners association. The couple also resumed their War College hosting activities. Edna volunteered at the Portsmouth Humane Society shelter for several years and provided homes for some of the “lucky dogs”.
In addition to her husband, Bill she is survived by daughter Ellen (Harry Bush, Jr.) of Cape Ann, Massachusetts; son David (Mary Ford) of Round Hill, VA; grandchildren: Harrison “Scott” Bush (wife Emily Plump), Alexander Bush (wife Taylor Anvid); Charles Bush (wife Shuwen Chen); Jack Parker; William (Pete) Parker; Kate Parker; and one great-granddaughter. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews and their children, who are scattered throughout the U.S. She maintained close ties with all of her family over the years. A devoted friend, a devoted mother and wife, she left a legacy of love and generosity and a deep respect for her strength of character and self-sacrifice.
Edna will be buried at St. Mary’s Episcopal Churchyard on East Main Road in Portsmouth. A small family ceremony is planned at this time.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to your local Animal Shelter or to the Hope Health Hulitar Hospice Center,1085 North Main Street, Providence, RI 02904.