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Thomas Mulcahey, veteran LI teacher, dies at 74

Thomas James Mulcahey, an educator who taught kindergarten through 12th grade in Plainedge and Levittown for 37 years and legal classes at Hofstra University, died Feb. 26 of cancer in Palm Desert, Calif. He was 74.

During Mulcahey's decades in the classroom, he received three national science fellowships, one of his daughters said.

"He was a gifted teacher," said Deborah Mulcahey, 53, of Michigan. "He was a very intelligent man who shared his knowledge and his desire to learn with his daughters and his students."

Mulcahey, who was born in upstate Oswego on Feb. 22, 1936, graduated from Oswego State College in 1955 with a bachelor's degree in education.

In 1963, he came to Long Island and studied at Hofstra, where he received his master's degree in education. He then attended Brooklyn College of Law in 1969, graduating with his juris doctorate.

In 1969, he was admitted to the New York bar, and in 1971 he was admitted to practice in federal district court. He lived in Seaford and the Cold Spring Hills area of Huntington.

"While he instilled in his children the concept that they needed to be independent, to take care of themselves," said his daughter, "he also taught them of the responsibility to help others who needed help, specifically those that could not take care of themselves."

Mulcahey moved to LaQuinta, Calif., with his wife in 1992 to live in warmer weather. There, he continued to teach and was a deacon at the Palm Desert Community Presbyterian Church.

Besides his daughter Deborah, Mulcahey is survived by his wife of 54 years, Maureen; daughters Kathleen Mulcahey-Hampson of Sandown, N.H., and Jeanne Mulcahey of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.; sisters Kathleen Dzwonkas of upstate Whitesboro, Ann Rose Frateschi of upstate Lakeland and Geraldine Buckley of upstate Endwell; brothers Cornelius and Daniel, both of Oswego; and two grandchildren.

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