Obituary of Sally Joan McLaughlin
McLAUGHLIN, Sally Joan, died in Tampa, FL from natural causes at age 92 on Tuesday, June 5, 2018. She raised five sons, had a long and successful career as a medical records supervisor, and more recently served the sick and disabled as a Catholic lay minister at Holy Family Catholic Church. In a 1985 article published about Sally in The Tampa Tribune, she was described as “the hidden professional” who patients never saw behind the doctors. She told a reporter the job was rewarding because it was “such a vital part of the medical field. The patient’s recovery is the whole thing.” Sally eventually retired from St. Joseph’s Hospital. Born to Jesse Edw. O’Keeffe and Edythe A. Bitz on Nov. 24, 1925 in Flint, Michigan, Sally’s early life was shaped by the death her mother Edythe when she was only age eight. In 1946, she married Patrick Leon McLaughlin, and began her career as a mother and stenographer. She then moved from Michigan to Florida in 1952 when Pat pursued a career as a broadcast engineer with WFLA-TV. Sally is survived by her sons, Michael Patrick McLaughlin, Daniel Edward McLaughlin, Thomas John McLaughlin, Patrick Leon McLaughlin Jr., and Terence Mark McLaughlin, and their spouses; six grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; a niece, Cheryl Hammer; and sister-in-law, Susan Bolls. When asked recently to share her thoughts on life, Sally advised: “Make the best of what you have.” There will be a funeral Mass on Saturday, June 9 at 11am at Holy Family Catholic Church, 200 78th Ave. N.E., St. Petersburg, FL. A brief graveside service will be conducted at about 12:45 pm on Saturday, June 9 at Memorial Park Cemetery, 2095 54th Ave. N. Memorial donations may be made to Catholic Charities, Diocese of St. Petersburg, 1213 16th Street North, St. Petersburg, FL 33705.