Cover photo for Marilyn Rooney's Obituary
Marilyn Rooney Profile Photo
1933 Marilyn 2020

Marilyn Rooney

April 20, 1933 — November 30, 2020

April 20, 1933 - November 30, 2020
Sacramento, California - Eighty seven years ago, a girl lived through a birth, when the odds of survival were very low. Marilyn F. (Greene) Rooney was born to Florence T. (Black) and Joseph S. Greene in Sacramento, three months premature. Her chances of survival at that time were considered extremely low, especially weighing only three pounds. She was also born at the depths of the great depression with World War II being just a few years away. Regardless, she grew up in a caring family that had strong roots in Sacramento.
Two of her grandparents were born in Sacramento and her great grandfather, John Black came to Sacramento from Sligo, Ireland in 1835 as a "Roustabout". He unloaded cargos of flour which may explain why later in life he was the well-known proprietor of the Sacramento Cracker Bakery.
A fourth generation Sacramentan, she spent her youth in the $7000 house that her parents had built on 42nd Street in East Sacramento. In her later years, she fondly referred to this house as "The Happy House". Her parents also built a nice apartment building on 39th Street that is still owned by family members.
She attended Sacramento High School and later studied at Cal Berkeley. Even though she enjoyed attending Cal, it was a difficult time. One spring weekend, when she was 19, she came home from Berkeley and her father passed away suddenly. It was probably the most difficult time of her life. Throughout her life, she spoke about her father with great fondness and told stories about summer vacations to Santa Cruz and outings to the Del Paso Country Club. With resilience, her mother Florence took over operation of the apartment building and was able to keep the family financially healthy.
As a young and pretty lady, Marilyn had a job as a guide at the state capital, which she enjoyed very much. She said she thought that the legislators were "very nice" and was later told by her friends and family that some of the legislators were nice but maybe for the wrong reasons and that she might want to beware. She decided the advice was good and she took it.
In her early twenties, she went on a blind date with a young man she would spend the rest of her life with. He was Bernard (Babe) Rooney, and in 1956, they were married at Sacred Heart Church on 39th and "J" Streets. Babe's friends would often comment how lucky he was to have such a wonderful wife and family. They had a Christian Faith that remained strong for the 63 years they were married. They were also one of the last hop growing families in California. Babe passed away just four months prior.
The marriage resulted in four sons, Jim, Joe, Kevin & Frank and a daughter, Maureen (Woolford). She also had seven grandsons and a granddaughter and she is survived by them all. Marilyn had a sister, Cynthia and a cousin, Teen, who both proceeded her in death. Teen would later become a Catholic nun who, along with Cynthia were successful in one of the biggest corruptions of Marilyn's life. They showed her how to smoke cigarettes. She said she enjoyed smoking but upon learning of the dangers and having young children, she immediately quit and insisted quitting was easy.
Nothing came before the welfare of her family and of all the things she passed on to her children, the most important things were kindness and empathy. She would always gently urge her children to be nice to others, especially those who may have been a bit lonely.
As a lifelong, devout Christian, a simple Catholic, graveside service will be held at 1:00 pm on Monday, December 7 at St. Mary's Cemetery in Sacramento with a social gathering to follow later that afternoon. Information of the gathering will be shared at the service or can be obtained by contacting a family member. Food, refreshments and some old stories will be shared.

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