Martha Lou Hegarty, 86, of Easton, Kan., passed away peacefully with loved ones by her side, Tuesday, Dec.13, 2022, at Atchison Hospital. Martha “Marty” was born in Neosho, Mo., on July 7, 1936, the daughter of Harold and Katharine Conley Cushman.
Marty attended Neosho schools and graduated in 1954. She was active in drama and carried that love throughout her life by making and wearing costumes, attending and supporting local drama productions, and taking her family to professional plays and musicals. Marty attended Pittsburgh State until her marriage on December 26, 1954, to Marvin McCreary. They had three children and later divorced.
Marty was a devoted mother, grandmother, and great grandmother who loved supporting her family in their respective activities. She married Gerald (Jerry) Hegarty January 10, 1981 in Trenton, Mo. and moved to the family farm outside of Easton, Kan. Marty was a passionate nursing home administrator and owner. In 1982 she began working at Easton Manor and fell in love with the home. She later purchased the facility, renamed it Country Care, and operated the home for many years with her daughter Tammy. Her love and care for the residents and staff at Country Care was unmatched. Marty was very active in the Missouri and Kansas Healthcare Organizations and was well respected in the industry. She lobbied in Jefferson City, Topeka, and Washington, DC for Nursing Home Legislation and causes. The Kansas Health Care Association honored her by establishing the Marty Hegarty Distinguished Citizen award. This award is given annually to a resident of a Kansas nursing home who has manifested a lifetime of altruistic service to their community.
Marty was committed to her faith and was an active member of the Easton United Methodist Church. She was also involved with many civic organizations, but especially cherished her P.E.O. sisters.
Marty is survived by her husband of 41 years, Jerry; children, Terri (Chris) Jones of Novinger, Mo., Joe (Traci) McCreary of Colorado Springs, Colo., and Tammy (Larry) O’Donnell of Easton, Kan.; grandchildren, BJ Richardson, Brittany Shaffer (Michael Hall), Madison O’Donnell, Mackenzie O’Donnell and Quinn O’Donnell; and great granddaughters, Abby and Emma Shaffer. She is also survived by her bonus daughter, Nadeane (Kevin) Cooper and two bonus grandchildren Krissa and Ryan; and nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents and sister, Carol McDaniel. We will miss her “million dollar” smile and cheerful, loving attitude.
Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, 2022, at the R.L. Leintz Funeral Home. A funeral service will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 17, 2022, at Easton United Methodist Church. Burial will follow at Mount Olivet Cemetery. Memorials are suggested to Easton United Methodist Church.