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Donald Erwin Mooney

Donald Erwin Mooney, 78, died Wednesday, September 4, 2019 at the Winston-Salem Novant Hospital after an extended illness.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Frances (Sawyer) Mooney, formerly of Groton, three children, David Mooney of MA; Nydia Thornton (Scott Thornton) of NC, and Mary Mooney (David Columbare) of MA, three grandsons and one great-granddaughter.
     Born and raised in Webster Groves/St. Louis, MO, the eighth child of Frank P. and Margaret Blake Mooney, he had a lifelong commitment to his family. Don was pre-deceased by his parents, his siblings: John, Blake, Joan Swiber, James, and Daniel. He is sadly missed by his surviving siblings: Peggy Ripple, Patrick, Joseph, Kathleen Alvarez and Cornelius. He will be missed by his many nephews, nieces, and cousins.
     Don had a lifelong passion for travel and seeing family, friends and meeting new people. He joined the Army in 1965, serving in Vietnam, Berlin, Desert Storm, and Kosovo. He was awarded Command Sergeant Major in Desert Storm during the first Iraq War. He made numerous friends along these postings and enjoyed his and Fran’s RV experiences across the United States with their military family (S*M*A*R*T, Special Military Active And Retired Travel Club). In particular, he enjoyed their west coast journeys through the national parks and especially liked San Diego.
     His military service was with the Army Security Agency, spending one year in Vietnam and two years in West Berlin, Germany. He was discharged from the RA in 1969, joining the Army Reserve in 1973; he was mobilized for Desert Storm in November 1990, serving through August 1991 as CSM of the Third Army Medical Corp, retiring from the Army Reserves as CSM in 1993.
     His military training gave him analytical skills he brought to his private life. Don pursued his passion for genealogy research of his ancestors and he spent countless hours researching the Mooney history. He traced his roots back to the early 1800s to Ireland. His last discovery was the location of his maternal grandfather, for whom he had researched for nearly 20 years.
     He was valued by all for his mild manner and ability to relate on a personal level to everyone.
     Interment with Military Honors were held at Groton Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the National Kidney Foundation at www.kidney.org /support. Arrangements were handled by the McGaffigan Family Funeral Home, 37 Main St. Pepperell, MA. Please see www.mcgaffiganfuneral.com.
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