Claire Elizabeth Merrigan Carroll of Fairfield, wife of the late Thomas A. Carroll Sr.,died April 3, 2010, with her family by her side.

Born in New York City, she was a singer with several of the Big Bands in the1940s, until she met Thomas. They married in 1952 and lived for many years in Jersey City, N.J., until they moved to Fairfield, where she had been a resident since 1973.

The daughter of the late Patrick and Elizabeth McEntegart Merrigan, she was a loving and caring mother and grandmother.

Carroll is survived by her children, Marilyn (Mimi) Drewes and her husband, William of Park Ridge, N.J., Thomas Jr. of Fairfield, Robert and his wife, Romana of Shelton; and his granddaughters, Brienne Drewes and Allison Zuraik and her husband, Chris of Park Ridge, N.J. She is also survived by her brothers, Mathew Merrigan of Manchester, N.J., and Thomas Merrigan of Melville, N.Y., and their spouses and many nieces and nephews; as well as her good friend, Edward.

She was predeceased by her brothers, Patrick and John Merrigan; and her sisters, Ruthie and Josephine (Dodie) Merrigan.

Carroll was a long-time member of Holy Family Parish of Fairfield. She retired from Fairfield University, where she worked as an administrative assistant for many years. She loved to sing, always with a song in her heart and song on her lips, and would engage anyone in song at any given moment.

Calling hours took place at the Spear Miller Funeral Home, 39 South Benson Road, Fairfield, on April 6. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated today, April 7, at 10 a.m. at Holy Family Parish Church, 700 Old Stratfield Road, Fairfield; burial will follow at the Holy Cross Cemetery, 340 Ridge Road, North Arlington, N.J.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her memory to the Alzheimer's Association, P.O. Box 96011, Washington, DC 20090-6011 (

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