ellie leary & ames aracy
Mary Ellen (Nellie) Cleary was born at Rushworth on the 15 th June 1884. She was the eldest daughter of Thomas and Harriet Cleary. She married James Laracy on the 28th June 1905 at Tatura.
Nellie and James lived on a farm at Girgarre East. Their house was named 'Happy Valley'. They had six children. Nellie died in 1920 and in 1925 James sold the farm and moved into Rushworth. Following the death of their mother the children were looked after by their father's sister, Kate. After Kate's death James lived with his son, Bernard, at Cobram. He died at Cobram in 1954 at the age of eight-five years.
The eldest daughter, Mary (Molly), worked throughout the Goulburn Valley in many occupations before marrying Arthur Kilpatrick of Alexandra. She has lived at Alexandra ever since. With her wonderful memory and sharp wit. she has been a great source of information for this history. She is the eldest of the third generation of the Clearys.
Margaret was accidentally killed in 1915 and Kathleen died in 1933. Kathleen was a book-keeper and office worker. The eldest son, Bernard, was a carpenter at Cobram. Later he worked with Collin Patterson, the husband of Lily Cleary. Bernard married Bessie Edwards. In his last years he lived at Fairfield Melbourne. My wife and I spent a very pleasant afternoon with him early in 1985. He was able to confirm many stories that my father had told me over the years. He died in 1985.
Frances became a nurse and married Vincent Phillips at Wangaratta. Frances died in 1975. Leo was an electrician and served in the R.A.A.F. in New Guinea during World War II. He married Veronica McCartney and settled in Scarborough, Western Australia. He died in 1973.
My mother (Lily) recalls staying with the Laracys at Girgarre when she arrived from England in 1922. She was welcomed with great kindness and friendliness.