Cover photo for Eileen A. Lucey's Obituary
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1955 Eileen 2024

Eileen A. Lucey

1955 — January 14, 2024

“There is always hope”

Dr. Eileen Alida Lucey, 69, died unexpectedly at her home in Slingerlands, NY on January 14, 2024. Born on January 3, 1955 in East Lansing, Michigan, Eileen spent the majority of her childhood in Ithaca, NY. Eileen delighted in her family and lived a spirited life of courage, service, and achievement.

She was the eldest daughter of Dr. Robert F. Lucey, a professor of agronomy, from whom she inherited her green thumb, and Marie Ernestine (Lemire) Lucey, from whom she inherited her interest in medicine. Her curiosity, determination, and concern for others came from both. Eileen grew up with an older brother and six younger brothers and sisters. Family activity was ever present: dancing to the Four Tops, playing cards, pond skating, tending a garden. An accomplished skater, she was not only a soloist in many Cornell Figure Skating Club shows but even directed one as well. And boy could she belt out a cheer as a cheerleader.

Eileen graduated from Ithaca High School in 1973 and Cornell University in 1977. Though she began her career with Commercial Union in Boston, she became interested in medicine and completed pre-med classes at Harvard University Extension. She then earned her MD from the University of Cincinnati in 1989. She was an excellent doctor and loved practicing internal medicine in Pittsburgh, PA, Canandaigua, NY, and Ithaca, NY. Devoted to her patients, she made house calls, volunteered for on-call duties, worked hospital rounds during holidays, and cared for hospice patients.

In 1999, Eileen suffered two catastrophic strokes as a result of an injury sustained while figure skating, leaving her with significant deficits including left side paralysis. Despite facing daunting odds, she worked courageously for many years to relearn everything from eating to walking, finally achieving her ambition to live independently. Post-stroke, she may have stopped practicing medicine, but she never stopped being a doctor. Her family often sought and respected her medical advice. She returned to enjoy many hobbies, attended St. Thomas the Apostle Church faithfully, and kept in touch with her extended family through cards, social media, and visits.

Eileen was an active participant in the TBI Waiver Program at the College of St. Rose, a source of great support and community for her. “Doc” as she was called, inspired St. Rose’s annual “Moving Message”, which raises funds for and awareness about traumatic brain injuries and stroke and celebrates its participants’ achievements. For one walk’s theme, Eileen chose HOPE stating, "I have experienced positive physical change 12 and 14 years out from my stroke. I know there is always hope." Guided by the serenity prayer, Eileen never gave up. Her sister Beth treasures a Bob Marley quote Eileen sent her, "You don't know how strong you are until being strong is your only option."

Eileen took great joy in and was an inspiration for her large family. She was predeceased by her parents, Robert Francis and Marie Ernestine (Lemire) Lucey, and her niece, Justine Lucey. Eileen is survived by sisters Jeanne-Marie Apgar (Michael), Mary McIlvennie (Scott), Elizabeth Lucey (Attila Veres), brothers Robert Lucey (Anne), James Lucey (Jessica Ziegler), Cornelius Lucey, III (Stephanie), Brian Lucey (Amy), nieces and nephews Erin Hillman (William), Caitlin Lucey (Daniel Rosales), Robert (Max) Lucey (Kathryn), Marie Richards (Jason), Ashley DeMott (Andrew), Steven Apgar (Bailey), Claire McIlvennie (Ethan Self), Sarah McIlvennie (Steph Thresher), Catherine Lucey, Cornelius (CJ) Lucey, IV, Alida Lucey, and John (Jack) Lucey, grandnieces and grandnephews Jake, Evelyn, Liam, Quinn, McKenzie, Cecelia, and Lorelei Eileen. She still hopes that one day one of them will follow in her and her grandfather’s footsteps. Eileen is also survived by her Uncle Paul Pratt and countless Lucey and Lemire cousins.

The family would like to thank all those who cared for and helped Eileen. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 11:30 AM, January 24 (Wednesday) at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, 35 Adams Place, Delmar, NY. Calling hours will be held from 4:00 to 6:00 PM, January 23, 2024 at Applebee's Funeral Home, 403 Kenwood Ave., Delmar, NY.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Living Resources Foundation, 300 Washington Avenue Ext., Albany NY 12203

Living Resources Foundation Donation Link
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Service Schedule

Past Services


Tuesday, January 23, 2024

4:00 - 6:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Mass of Christian Burial

Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Starts at 11:30 am (Eastern time)

Church Of St. Thomas The Apostle

35 Adams Place, Delmar, NY 12054

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