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John F. Mulligan

Lake Village, AR, 1914 - 2010

John F. Mulligan, beloved husband of Maria Pesaresi Mulligan, passed away on December 5, 2010 at his home surrounded by his family. Born June 14, 1914 in Lake Village, Ark., the son of Peter and Mary Belmont Mulligan graduated from St. Mary's Catholic School, attended Catholic High in Little Rock, and graduated from Lakeside High School. He attended the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind., where he ran hurdles on the track team. He left college during the Depression to assist his father in the family wholesale grocery business. During World War II, he served as a Sergeant in the U.S. Army in both the European and Pacific theaters. He was among the heroic U.S. soldiers who crossed the beach at Normandy, France arriving in August 1944, two months after the first American troops landed on Omaha beach. He and his wife Maria were married for 51 years, until his death, and together lovingly raised three children, John Peter Mulligan, Mary Elizabeth Mulligan, and Patrick James Mulligan.
The life-long Lake Village resident served as Postmaster. After his retirement from federal service, he was associated with the Chicot Land Co. And the Epstein Festinger White Land Co., whose office he managed until 2009. He was a member of Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church, a past president of parish council, superintendent of the St. Mary's School, and a charter member of the Father Galloni Council 3383 Knights of Columbus and served as a Grand Knight and a Fourth Degree Knight, the highest degree in the order. Mr. Mulligan was a past Commander of the American Legion Post No. 7 and the V.F.W.
He was an avid golfer for nearly 70 years, having first worked as a caddy in high school. Mr. Mulligan was a founding member of the Lake Village Country Club and was the oldest active player. He greatly enjoyed the company of his many golfing buddies throughout the years, and two separate holes-in-one at the Lake Village Country Club were a golfing highlight. He was a fan of Notre Dame's Fighting Irish and Arkansas Razorbacks football teams, enjoying televised games for decades through this season. He added immeasurable joy and love to the lives of his friends and family and his intelligence, sense of humor, and loyalty will be missed by all those who knew him.
A natural-born story teller, he loved to share wonderful tales from his childhood. He vividly recalled the Great 1927 Flood, when he delivered groceries in a row boat. As a child, he and his brothers had a pet goat that they road with a saddle. As a young man, he kept hunting dogs, including his excellent bird dog, Joe.
He enjoyed a good game of poker and taught his three children to hold their cards close. He loved to tell his children about the sporting events he attended, including the Army- Notre Dame football game in 1937 in Yankee stadium, the 1973 Sugar Bowl and PGA golf tournaments around the U.S. He walked outdoors for exercise long before it was widely popular and enjoyed daily walks along Lakeshore Drive for nearly 30 years.
In addition to his wife and children, he is survived by his lovely daughter-in-law, Tami Mulligan; four wonderful grandchildren, Madison, Caroline, Webb, and Crawford Mulligan; and his dear brother James Mulligan and his wife Marian. He is pre-deceased by his parents, brother Pete Mulligan and sister Elizabeth Mulligan Guinn.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the John F. Mulligan Scholarship Fund, Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church, 314 South Lakeshore Drive, Lake Village, Arkansas 71653.

Published December 9, 2010