Cahill, Linda Griffin

Endwell: Linda Griffin Cahill, Endwell, wife of James N. Cahill, beloved sister, aunt and exuberant friend of many, died on February 16, 2012. Her death is sudden, unexpected and tragic for all who knew and loved her. An accomplished pianist and organist, Griffin inherited her passion for music, particularly opera, from her mother, Madeline Santa Lucia, a Juilliard School-trained lyric soprano. Griffin grew up on the Santa Lucia family farm in Kirkwood, NY. As a little girl, she harvested hay and corn and rode her horse, Gussie. She gained her skill with animals from her beloved Aunt Eleanor. After graduating from The Crane School of Music SUNY Potsdam, Griffin began a long career in the Union Endicott School District, fostering a love of music in more than 1,000 pupils per year. In 1998 she was voted one of the Best Teachers in America by Who’s Who Among American Teachers. Griffin’s fervor for music ranged far beyond the classroom. She was an ardent supporter of the New York Metropolitan Opera, Verdi, Puccini, Rossini, singers, conductors and an army of amateur friends and family whom she educated with tolerant enthusiasm. From her Italian mother Griffin acquired her talent for music; because of her Irish father, Neil Griffin, she fell in love with all things Irish. A self-taught bagpiper, three decades ago she and Douglas Arnott founded Broome County Pipes and Drums. It is impossible to count the many parades, weddings, funerals and fundraisers Griffin and the band piped through grief or celebration. Opera and music were but two of her passions. Griffin loved animals and all animals loved her. On her own initiative, with her famous dog, Hugo, she created a therapeutic program that comforted the ill and disabled throughout Broome County. Griffin is predeceased by her parents and her brother, Joseph Griffin. She is survived by her husband, Jim; her stepsons, Peter and Zachary Cahill; step grandchildren, Caitlin and Connor Cahill; brothers, Michael (Joan) Griffin, Windsor, Thomas Griffin, Kirkwood; sisters, Tonetta (Norman) Wallen and Patricia Griffin, Kirkwood; sisters-inlaw, Pat Griffin, Cathleen Barber, Margaret Cahill, Ellen McDonough, Mary Jane Salk; several nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews. Griffin will also be mourned by her thousands of former students; the Independent Mutual Aid Society, of which she was vice president; her fellow pipers, singers and musicians; neighborhood dogs, feeding songbirds and feral cats. We will never forget the rowdy sing-alongs, the fearless cooking, the dinner parties, the hearty laughs, open door and open heart. Here’s to you, Griff. You always were and will be the life of every party. The family will receive friends at the Allen Memorial Home, 511-513 East Main Street, Endicott, Thursday, February 21, 4-7 p.m., with the Independent Mutual Aid Society meeting at 6:45 p.m. Funeral Services will be held at the Allen Memorial Home, Friday, February 22, 10:15 a.m., followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. at St Anthony of Padua Church, 306 Odell Avenue, Endicott. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Joseph A. Griffin Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o Broome County Government Security, PO Box 1766, 44 Hawley Street, Binghamton, NY 13902.