Caileigh Duggan

Obituary of Caileigh O'Donohue Duggan

Caileigh O’Donohue Duggan
November 22, 2004 – June 10, 2023

The sweetest girl in the world, Caileigh O’Donohue Duggan, has been taken from earth. In her short 18 years, Caileigh touched more people and loved wholeheartedly and unselfishly - more than most dream of accomplishing in their longer lives. Caileigh lived in Breezy Point, and she loved everything about her community. She loved the beach, lifeguarding, her cabana, riding her bike around “with freedom” as she would say, the Bowl and her friends.

Caileigh recently completed her first year at the University of Tennessee, where she had been accepted into their competitive nursing program. Her first year at UTK was filled with nothing that surprised us – hard work, a collection of deep friendships, her country music and fun. She loved her dream school and dove headfirst into all the activities associated with being part of her Delta Gamma sorority family. Her goal was to become a pediatric oncology nurse and her departure is a huge loss to her expected future patients and families for whom she would have given her ultra special love and empathy. Someone once told us that this is a tough field, yet we knew it was her calling and that Caileigh would be perfect, giving her soul to comfort others in their greatest time of need.

Caileigh played hard and worked hard. Her many accomplishments did not come without extra practice, private lessons, and tutoring. Never one to complain and always with a smile on her face, she seemed excited to take on any challenge. Born with severe amblyopia, the leading cause of blindness in children, she worked hard in therapy and became part of the less than 3% of people who move from severe to no amblyopia.

Caileigh attended Fontbonne Hall Academy, under a four-year merit scholarship and participated in a three-year science elective program, conducting research into easier forms of therapy for amblyopia for which she had experienced. She was an avid volleyball player, and on the FHA JV and Varsity VB teams. In her senior year, she was a proud member of the 2022 Diocesan and City Championship teams, making it to the finals for the State Championship. She celebrated that night by attending her first Dave Matthews Band concert with her parents, a love for which she picked up from her father while riding in the car with him for years and listening to DMB tunes.

Caileigh was a member of the Brooklyn Elite Volleyball Club and was elected year-after-year as Team Captain. She was also an accomplished Irish Step Dancer and, for more than a decade, was a loved and proud member of The O’Malley Dance Academy. In addition to her many competitive Feis wins, she placed 12th in the Mid-Atlantic Oireachtas Regionals Competition, and we cherish her happiness that day and all her days where the fun with the O’Malley crew seemed endless. Caileigh attended Visitation Academy grammar school where she was awarded the school’s first- ever Character Award. Nobody was surprised. All of these activities helped fulfill Caileigh’s unsatiable desire to forge deep and long-term loving friends and relationships, mini “families” in her life.

Caileigh was very patriotic, loved the FDNY, and her Irish heritage. She was so proud to have family members as military veterans, and FDNY and NYPD members, especially her Deputy Chief Dad who she bragged about and forever wore his badge medal around her neck. She spoke with pride often that he gave it to her, telling everyone it was her favorite gift.

Caileigh ran at high speed through life. She was always coming and going, doors slamming in and out of the house with a ton of friends, never stopping to relax, never wanting to miss a moment of living or a moment of fun. She was a “no maintenance kid,” something we told her all the time. She was humble, encouraging to others, positive and willing to give her love and warmth and always-on smile to whoever needed it at the moment.

Caileigh – our sweet little Bunny -- and her bright light will be missed with unimaginable pain and will always be loved by her parents, MaryEllen and Joe, her sister Reilly, her nanny Eileen Coyle and grandpa the late John “Skippy” Coyle, Papa Jack and Nana, her aunts Patricia Marin, Erin Reilly (her godmother), Terri Anne Coyle, Cathy Amar, Nancy Duggan, Jen O'Donohue, Marina Lavelle, Pat Whaley, TT Black; her uncles Brian Duggan (her birthday pal), Billy O’Donohue, Jimmy Reilly, Kevin Lavelle, Bill and Billy Black (her godfather), the late John Whaley; her cousins Kelly, Kate & Henry Amar, Lauren & Brian Duggan, Alyssa, John & Robbie Dreyhaupt, Patrick, Emily, Connor & Noah Marin, Liam, Aidan, Gavin & Ronan O’Donohue, Kevin, Garret and Christina Lavelle, Sarah Morawski, and of course Fish and the late Theresa King and all of her extended aunts, uncles, cousins, dear friends, and mini families.

Wake service will begin on Thursday June 15, 2023 from 2:00 to 9:00 PM at Marine Park Funeral Home. 3024 Quentin Road Brooklyn, NY 11234, 718-339-8900.


Funeral mass will be on Friday June 16, 2023 at St. Thomas More Roman Catholic Church at 11:30 AM.204025 Rockaway Point Boulevard Breezy Point, NY 11697.


Committal will immediately follow to Holy Rood Cemetery. 111 Old Country Road Westbury, NY 11590.


To send a Floral Tribute please contact Floral Fantasy at 718-238-6978.


Visitation at Funeral Home

2:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Thursday, June 15, 2023
Marine Park Funeral Home, Inc.
3024 Quentin Road
Brooklyn, New York, United States


11:30 am
Friday, June 16, 2023
St. Thomas More R.C. Church
204-25 Rockaway Point Blvd.
Rockaway Point, New York, United States

Final Resting Place

2:00 pm
Friday, June 16, 2023
Cemetery of the Holy Rood
111 Old Country Road
Westbury, New York, United States
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