Maureen Ann (Kavanagh) Stein
Maureen Ann (Kavanagh) Stein, age 72, passed away peacefully surrounded by her family as they prayed the Rosary around her bed on Friday, February 26th, 2021, following a sudden stroke and several days of at-home hospice care. She was born the youngest of four children on March 22, 1948 in Inglewood, California to Harold and Mary Helen (Johnson) Kavanagh. She graduated from Bishop Conaty High School in 1966 and, after her children had grown, took classes at Riverland Community College. A few years after high school, her family moved to Arizona where she met and soon married Delano Stein on December 23, 1969 at St. John Vianney Church in Sedona, Arizona. The couple moved to North Dakota and had two daughters, Marlene and Celine. They eventually moved to Minnesota, and in 1991 arrived in Albert Lea. The couple divorced but made things easy and comfortable for their family by modeling mutual respect, hosting/attending frequent blended family gatherings, and sharing many laughs and memories.
Throughout the years Maureen held many jobs that brought her joy in helping people as well as allowing her to be available for her family. She was an in-home daycare provider, bank teller, Tupperware dealer, baker, paraprofessional, and optician. She especially enjoyed her retirement job selling pull tabs at the American Legion Post 56.
Maureen loved hanging out with her friends and family, singing karaoke, dancing, playing cards, BINGO, gardening, canning, cooking, going on shopping trips, dressing up for Big Island Rendezvous, and making sure everyone had some rhubarb when in season. She delighted in baking, trying new art projects, and adventuring with her grandchildren; be it teaching them old family recipes, trying to keep up with a Bob Ross painting tutorial (it’s not as easy as it looks), kayaking the Minnesota River, camping on a 3-week road trip across the country, standing in the mist of Niagara Falls, or almost blowing away in the wind while whale watching on Cape Cod.
Maureen genuinely cared about people and did what she could to let them know they were special. Every holiday was worthy of a party or get together with Mo, and everyone was invited. She decorated right down to cute, themed hand towels for every holiday and took extra care to make everyone’s favorite dishes for the occasion. She could light up a room with her smile and make everyone feel like they were part of the family. Ma Stein’s generosity touched the hearts of many people over the years and gave them the love of a mother—related or not.
Maureen’s spirit will be carried on by her daughters Marlene Stein-Greiner (Jason) and Celine Stein (Darin); sister Celine N.; brother Mike (Rosie) K.; grandchildren Elora, Treselia, Mathias, Gloria, Wesley; “family-types” Lois Ahern, Elliot and Juli Pagel and children, Shirley and Dale Leeman; and friends too numerous to list but not forgotten.
She is now reunited with her dearly departed father, Harold K.; mother, Helen K.; sister, Pat K.; brother-in-law, Lowell N.; son-in-law, Mike Greiner; and beloved life partner, Jeff Bjornstad.
A Celebration of Life will be held during the summer of 2021 on a date to be announced later.
Memorial gifts and donations may be made to Albert Lea Mayo Hospice in honor of Maureen’s spirit of love and caregiving at https://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/locations/albert-lea/services-and-treatments/hospice/how-you-can-help.