Stephanie O’Brien


Stephanie O’Brien, 96, formerly of Warwick, passed away peacefully on April 15, 2019.

Stephanie was born in Rhode Island to Michael and Anastasia (Kufluk) Poshnyk. As a first-generation American, she had a hunger for learning, teaching herself to sew at age 5 and mastering the English language, despite entering the first grade only knowing Ukrainian. After completing high school and joining the workforce, she never ceased her quest for knowledge, becoming an expert at some of her favorite hobbies like knitting, refinishing and upholstering furniture, gardening and renovating houses.

Stephanie married David F. Halpin, who died in World War II in 1945. On April 7, 1947 she married Howard O’Brien in Rhode Island. Howard predeceased her on September 4, 2018. At the celebration of their 71st wedding anniversary, their love was still undeniable, unwavering and unmatchable. Stephanie was a beloved friend and community member, serving as president of her local Red Hat Society and Governor Francis Farms Garden Club. A master at sewing and counted cross-stitch, she poured her love into each item of clothing, doll outfit and embroidery she made for a friend, child, grand/great-grandchild or stranger. With a heart of gratitude and a quick wit, she truly emulated one of her favorite lines: “it’s hard to be humble when you’re this great.”

She is survived by her daughters, Stephanie McCarthy, Patricia O’Brien and Deborah (Raymond) Hill; grandchildren Patricia (Phillip) Kellogg, Maureen (James) Graca, Susan (Scott) Gunn, Raymond (Kendall) Hill, Gregory (Emily) Hill and Lauren (John) Atsalis; and great-grandchildren Ashley, Connor, Nicholas Graca, Rachel, Brett, Sean, Liam, Seth Kellogg, Lillian, Colleen, Mary Helen Gunn, Raymond, Tallon and Benjamin Hill. Stephanie was predeceased by her brother, Frederick Poshnyk, her sisters, Eugenia “Jinky” Kocan and Nancy Rosiak, and son-in-law John McCarthy. When speaking proudly of her family, she loved to say, “He said go forth and multiply, so we did.”

Stephanie’s family extends their sincere gratitude to the staff at Mayflower Rehab and Assisted Living and Cape Cod Hospital who cared for her, held her hand, prayed with her and shared in her laughs.

Visiting hours will be from 9-9:30 a.m. on Friday, April 26, at John-Lawrence Funeral Home, 3778 Falmouth Road, Marstons Mills. A funeral mass will follow at 10 a.m. at Our Lady of Victory Church, 230 S. Main St., Centerville. Burial will be at 2 p.m. in Rhode Island Veterans Cemetery, Exeter.


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