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Location: Arizona, United States

My name is Colleen and I find dead people.

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30 March, 2006


This is the sequel to the previous post, focusing on the current generations and the dreams we're living.

The above picture is from my oldest brother Shawn and his wife Debbie's wedding(they are in the center). It's not exactly a recent picture, but it's the best I can do for now. Shawn and Debbie have raised two girls and currently have one granddaughter and a grandangel in heaven. I'm not sure how the girls feel about having their pictures on the web, so I won't put them up yet. But I don't need their permission to say how proud I am of them!

This picture is my middle brother, Terry and his daughter, Kelley. She is a Sophomore at a major Big 12 university, and she's heading for great things!

The last one is my school staff picture. I hate the background color, so I faded it out as best I could!

29 March, 2006


I cannot believe how stuck I am in my research. I don't know where to go next, even though I have those wonderful Research Goal sheets ready to be utilized. I've just lost some momentum, and I'm trying to find it. I suspect I'll find it when I stop looking for it. Until then, I had an idea to dedicate a post to the generations of my tree.

This is my great grandmother on my mother's maternal side, known formally as Jane McCue Doyle, or affectionately as Ma Doyle. Her given name may have been Genevieve McCue/McHugh, as an index to her marriage to John J. Doyle identifies her as Jennie. Her years were ~1867 - ?

Below are my great grandparents on my father's maternal side Edward and Justina (Nahodil/Nachodile) Hodick. Edward's years were ~1867 - 1951 and Justinas ~1875 - 1950.

My mother's parents, are pictured below. Regina (Jean) Doyle (1905-1979) and James O'Rourke (1902-1963). My mom, Regina (Jean) O'Rourke, 1938-1988, is also pictured. James' grandparents on his dad's side remains one of my biggest brick walls.

My father's parents, Joseph (1902-1976) and Mary (Hodick) McHugh (1906-1976).

Finally, my parents, Dennis and Jean (O'Rourke) McHugh.

22 March, 2006

Ancestral Cloud 9?

I'm such a thief! I saw this "word cloud" on my friend Donna's blog along with a link to the website where she found it. I thought it was kind of neat. You enter your website's URL and it scans it for various words. It then assembles the words into a jpeg image. It gives you a list of the words it chose to use and provides you with space to change any/all of them. I chose to add as many surnames as I could while still leaving a few spaces for general words. You can even order a t-shirt with the final image! Try it out, it's fun (though it will ask about shirt design, you do not have to purchase one!).

18 March, 2006

Research Goals

This past week I had the privilege of meeting two wonderful ladies who I first "met" in the AOL Genealogy Community at a local Family History Center (FHC). It was great to meet them in real life, and I hope they had as good a time as I did!

The night before we were to meet, I sat down and organized my information and identified my research goals for the next day. I even developed a "Reseach Goals" form to use to help me clarify what information I had and what information I was seeking.

It is quite difficult to see the fields of information this form calls for in this picture. It requests the date and place of research, the target of the research for whom this form is intended, the goal of this particular research effort (what information is being sought), current speculations about the research target, the source or foundation of those speculations, and potential resources. It also leaves room to identify if and where the inforomation was found.

I was SO PROUD of this form and for filling a few in for my "research targets". I was ready to conquer the world (or at least the FHC). Alas I was so intent on preparing this form and completing them for the ancestors I'm seeking, I failed to be prepared in terms of having pre-searched from home. Thus, I didn't have any idea if any documentations were available on the FHC microfilms/michrofiche files or anything. Sure, I could do that at the Center when I got there, but when I GOT there .... the place was PACKED! Nearly every computer was used, and when I was able to get to one, the only film I found referenced in their collection was one that was not available at t his FHC! But that's okay, I can go back another time and order it. I was able to get an idea of the books available at the FHC and became familiar with how the Center works.

If you haven't been to an FHC yet, I would strongly recommend you see if they have one near you and drag yourselves over there if they do!

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Genealogy Communities

A couple of years ago, when I began my genealogical journey, I stumbled into a chat room on AOL that was devoted to genealogical research methods and processes. I was amazed at what I saw. I was immediately welcomed into the mix, invited to share the surnames for which I was searching, and offered assistance in numerous ways. They directed me to a community website, which housed the chat schedules, message boards, and other resources. Chat topics included everything from regional issues/research (Pennsylvania, Europe, etc) to Civil War Chats to Look-Up Assistance Chats to How To Conduct Resarch Chats. It was amazing! For those of you on AOL, check out our chat schedule at AOL Genealogy Community News (scroll down for the schedule).

Not on AOL? Never you fear! We are now expanding our community to the World Wide Web. Thanks in large part to one of our community hosts, GCH Will CW, we now have an internet site complete with message boards, blogs, links, members' websites, and yes, discussion rooms! Some of our AOL chats have moved to the internet site, with more to come. So how do you get to this wonderful site? Why, it's simple. Just CLICK HERE, or go to Some of our chats are uploaded to the library at this site, so if you noticed a chat that you missed or couldn't access, check here to see if a copy of the chat content is there. You do need to register, but that is free and painless. Once registered, go to the Genealogy Community homepage, sign in, and click on the link to the left entitled "Genealogy Library".

It's that easy to become part of a great community of genealogical profeessionals and hobbyists.

05 March, 2006

The Five Generations

This entry represents the known generations of my maternal O'Rourke line, beginning with my mother's brother, James.
James O'ROURKE 1929 - 2005

Regina "Jean" Ann (O'ROURKE) McHUGH1938-1988

Regina "Jean" (DOYLE), Jean, James O'ROURKE

Margaret (Nelly), James, Mary (KEARNS), Elizabeth (Betty), Mary (Mae) O'ROURKE. This is my mother's father's family, minus her father (who perhaps was taking this picture?).

Mary, John, Bridget(DONAHUE), John, Winifred, Lawrence, Genevieve, Jerome, Margaret (Francie) KEARNS.

Bridget (DONAHUE) KEARNS' parents were Lawrence (Sandy) and Mary (KEHOE) Donahue.

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