Mary Claire Musselman, 95, formerly of Watertown

WATERTOWN, NY —  Mary Claire Musselman (née Donahue), 95, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and sister, passed away Oct. 7, 2020, at her home in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Born Jan. 11, 1925, in Rochester, NY, the daughter of George and Grace Donahue, she earned her undergraduate degree from The Ohio State University, and graduate degree from Syracuse University.

On July 5, 1952, she married her life partner, John Joseph Musselman II, in Watertown, NY. Before raising a family Mary Claire was a junior high school English teacher.

Her greatest treasures in life are her children Elizabeth (Betsy), Thomas (Tom), John (Jack), Jo Ellen, Mark, Francis (Fran), and Stephen (Steve) Musselman, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

While Mary Claire lived in OH, NY, NJ and MI, and retired to Scottsdale AZ, she called Watertown NY, as well as Knobby Knoll in Sackets Harbor NY, her true homes.

Mary Claire lived her life as a devout Catholic.

She was an avid bowler, golfer, reader, and Hershey Kiss lover.

She never failed to find the sweet and silly parts about life. For example, she would play Monopoly with her grandchildren, and cheat, and tell them she was cheating, and expect to continue the game anyway. She will be remembered as “The Lady of the Lake” at Knobby Knoll.

Mary Claire is survived by her husband, John Joseph Musselman II, of Scottsdale, AZ. She is also survived by her children Elizabeth (Betsy) of Taos NM, Thomas (Tom) of Scottsdale AZ, John (Jack) of Austin TX, Francis (Fran) of Scottsdale AZ, and Stephen (Steve) of West Friendship MD; and by her daughters-in-love Heather Litman of Culver City CA, Jennifer (Jenny) Veninga of Austin TX, and Aileen Slocum Musselman of West Friendship, Maryland; and by her grandchildren Stephen (Steve) Laycock, Matthew (Matt) Laycock, John Carl Musselman, Maryellyn Musselman, Isabel Anne Musselman, Luke Musselman, Liam Green Musselman, Smith Musselman, and Elliott James Veninga; and by her grandaughter-in-love Willoughby Laycock; and by her great-grandchildren Wilder and Adaline; and by her sister Julia Elizabeth (Beth) Collins.

Mary Claire will rest for eternity with her children, Jo Ellen and Mark, brother John (Jack), niece Susan, as well as her parents and many beloved cousins in Watertown, NY. A funeral service will be held to celebrate Mary Claire’s life in Scottsdale, AZ at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church. (Due to Covid 19, this funeral service will be restricted to Mary’s immediate family.) She will be laid to rest at Glenwood Cemetery at 23348 County Route 6 Watertown, NY.

In lieu of flowers please support the upkeep of the playground at Knobby Knoll NY where Mary’s children and grandchildren played, by sending a contribution to Knobby Knoll Sunshine Fund, ℅ Amy Corbett, 119 Chestnut Street, Watertown NY, 13601.

Please contact Jack ( and 512-577-7505) if you want to share any Mary Claire stories with he family.  Jack will share those stories with her family, after the funeral service, when we get together to celebrate Mary’s time with us.

God bless all of you for your love and support for Mary and her family.

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