Martha Ann McConnell

martha mcconnell
Martha Ann McConnell (née Helm) was called home on July 8, 2020. Her story began on May 22, 1923 in a log house on her grandparents’ farm in Marion County, KY.  The daughter of a U.S. Navy veteran and a teacher, Martha later welcomed younger brother Hugh Barrett, Jr., and the two attended Penick Elementary and Lebanon High Schools.  Following a visit from a Centre College representative, she received an endowment from Perryville Methodist Church, which was provided by her great aunt – Dr. Margaret Harrison Polk – to be used for young women who needed assistance with college expenses.  While enrolled at Centre, Martha met and fell in love with Angereau McConnell, a local farmer and former UK engineering student.  On her 21st birthday she graduated from Centre and became engaged, all in the same day; hers was the first class with female graduates.  The two were married on June 2, 1945 at Centenary United Methodist Church (CUMC), with a reception following at Old Crow Inn, and a honeymoon to Cumberland Falls.  They settled on the McConnell family farm, welcoming daughter Angela Polk in 1950 and Margaret Calvert in 1953. In the summer of 1953, Martha became the president of the Boyle County Homemakers Organization.  A few years later, she started working as a secretary at Kentucky School for the Deaf (KSD) and taking extension classes in deaf education, before working toward a Master’s degree in Speech and Hearing at the University of Kentucky.  Upon graduation, Martha was immediately elevated to a supervisory teaching position over the high school, physical education, and middle school.  After six years she was asked to assume a newly created position as KSD’s public relations director and editor of the monthly magazine, The Kentucky Standard.  Martha retired from KSD in 1986 after 30 years, but six months later was called back to edit the magazine on a part-time basis, and after three years retired a second time to care for Angereau.  Upon his death in 1990, she helped daughter Margaret operate the Agora Sports and Fitness Club until its sale in 1995. Martha was active in the Methodist church for over 70 years, serving as historian at Centenary and later helping found Third Street Methodist Church.  Twice she was president (and once vice president) of the United Methodist Women, and was proud to serve on and chair numerous committees throughout the years.  She served as president of the Boyle County Retired Teachers Association and a member of the board of the Boyle County Historical Society.  Martha was also heavily involved with PEO Chapter I in Danville, serving twice as president and eventually receiving the honorable title of Golden Girl, for 50 years of membership.  In 2014 she became the first and only hearing recipient of the KSD Alumni Association Award.  Martha was also a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She is survived by her daughters Angela (Howard) and Margaret (Kevin); grandsons David (Lauren) and Chris; granddaughters Morgan and Rori (David); great-grandsons Samuel and Maxwell; and nephews and niece Barry, Jeff, and Kathy (Perry).  She is preceded in death by her husband Angereau; brother (Hugh) and sister-in-law (Ruth); sisters-in-law Jean Marie (Norman) and Sara Adeline; and great-grandson Zac. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in Martha’s honor to the KSD Charitable Foundation  or a charity of your choice.
KSD Charitable Foundation
c/o Scott Haun (KSD)
303 South Second Street
Danville, KY 40422
A private graveside service will be held for family only. A private graveside service will be held for family only. Please sign the guest book or send a Hug from Home.

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Memories Timeline


  1. I met Martha through a breakfast group of my aunt\’s. Her sweet smile and caring attitude was always a welcome sight at our Saturday morning meetings. She will be missed. A dear sweet soul.

  2. Margaret, sad for the great loss of your precious Momma. Mrs. McConnell (how I addressed her) was a delight to know! Faye Best and I were based in the Vocational Rehabilitation office at KSD\’s Argo-McClure building. Your Momma graciously shared students\’ school pictures which were placed in their V.R. files. The pictures were a great asset to the V.R. team serving the students. Mrs. McConnell was always kind to us \”Rehab\” staff. She was much appreciated. Thoughts and prayers remain with you and yours.

  3. To Margaret Loved seeing your mother and getting to see her out and talk to her. Always enjoyed waiting on her when I worked at bank. She was a lovely lady. Deepest love and sympathy to you and family. Patty

  4. My deepest sympathy to all the family. At times she was a second mother because I stayed there a lot for sleepovers with Angela. She was beautiful,, smart, sweet, fun and quite influential in my life, church and Danville as a whole. You will be missed, Martha. Go be with God, Angereau, Zach and all of your loved ones awaiting your arrival in Heaven.❤ Gaile Marcum Blair

  5. Martha will be missed by all who knew her. She was an outstanding member of the Danville community and of our DAR chapter. Our heart goes out to her family at this very sad time. Please know she was loved by us all. Peggy W. Ellis, St. Asaph DAR Chaplain

  6. After a cruel 30 years apart, my Gaga can finally rejoin her soul mate, Papa. Selfishly our family is hurting, but we rejoice in her comfort and the remembrance of a long lifetime of sweet memories. Some people never even meet their grandparents, others get only a few years with them. I got an entire childhood and quite a bit of adulthood. My mother and aunt had their mother until they became seniors themselves. Our immense amount of time with Gaga was a precious gift. We are also fortunate to have a small, close-knit family, by virtue of which we see each other often. Gaga became a third parent after Papa died and my parents divorced. We rode the bus to her farm every day after school, and she cooked dinner for the whole family every night, always with Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy playing in the background. As we got older, Gaga chauffeured us to every practice and activity, never missing a dance recital, piano lesson, volleyball game, swim meet, choir performance, graduation, birthday, vacation, or Sunday lunch. She taught us the importance of farming and the beauty of ones own backyard, whether we were picking fresh mint or watercress, strolling the crab orchard, eating berries straight from the bush, whacking freshly fallen walnuts on a big stone with a hammer, or planting a brand new garden where a gnarly old bush used to be. Gaga taught me to drive, and took me to get my permit on 9/11. THE 9/11. She tried – God bless her – to tutor me in math all through grade school. We took several trips to visit our Florida family, just the two of us. She said Lady Gaga stole her name. She founded a church in her late 80’s. She beat breast cancer at the age of 93 and walked my sister down the aisle later that year. The woman was INCREDIBLE. Unstoppable. Unsinkable. But also sensitive and quick to shed a tear. I’m so grateful she wasn’t ashamed to emote and allowed us to learn the same. And the Godliest example of a human being you ever met. She was beloved by countless people across so many generations, The number of lives she touched, well, they’re innumerable. I can’t describe to you what it feels like to be her granddaughter. Proud isn’t a big enough word. And I can’t describe to you what it feels like to live in a world without her. Empty isn’t a strong enough word. She was the matriarch of our family and the last of her generation. Our hearts are broken.

  7. Mrs. Martha McConnell was a woman of intellect, grace, and beauty, traits she passed on to her two beautiful daughters. I will always remember her for the delightful, spunky, and charming person she was. She always extended her friendship and kindness to me, and always with a hug. It made me feel happy to be around her. I send my heartfelt sympathy and dearest love to her beautiful family at this time of such great loss. Mrs. McConnell was a special person. May she rest in peace and may her bright star shine eternally from Heaven.

  8. We feel privileged to have known both Martha and Angereau McConnell. What a wonderfully kind and caring couple. They were some of the first people who welcomed us to Danville in 1970 and our friendship grew as Darren became the scout master of Troop 27 at the Methodist Church. Angereau was an active member of the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsman and the Berea Fair would always find him and Stanley Durham demonstrating their blacksmithing skills near the front entrance gate for the enjoyment of the many visitors. Martha and Angereau were very special people and we\’re happy to have many fond memories of them.

  9. Dear Margaret, I am thinking of you today and how much you must be missing your dear mother. Today would\’ve been my mother\’s birthday and I still miss her greatly. Please accept my sincere condolences. My heartfelt sympathy goes out to you and your family and your daughters who I know are missing their beloved Gaga greatly.

  10. 202 days… it\’s been 202 days since you\’ve left us. I will continue to count the days. I miss you and love you so much, beautiful lady.

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