Maplewood - Judith Anne Buckley (Cowieson), beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend passed away on March 17, 2020 after a brief illness, surrounded by her loving family.
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She was born in Troy and raised in Green Island. Judy was a 1965 graduate of Heatly High School, where she was a member of the National Honor Society and a Majorette in the Drum Corp and adored by many.
She married the love of her life, Peter Buckley on November 7, 1969.
Judy and Peter moved to Maplewood in 1979 where she immersed herself in the community and all her children’s activities. From CYO Basketball, Armory Little League, Cohoes Babe Ruth, to helping out at the polls as an election inspector – Judy generously offered her time and engaging conversation. We often heard that people looked forward to Election Day because they would get to talk with her.
Everyone who met Judy instantly loved her. She was the most selfless, kind, loyal, and warm person with an infectious laugh and hysterical wit. Most walked away from a conversation with Judy feeling like family.
Judy enjoyed watching all sports including her beloved Red Sox and tennis great Novak Djokovic. She was also an amazing cook, at times making multiple meals just to make everyone happy. She loved to host her family but even when she didn’t, there wasn’t a holiday, pool party, or family gathering that she didn’t walk in with 10 bags filled with all of her homemade family favorites.
Judy was employed several years with the Maplewood School District and retired from the NYS Department of Motor Vehicles in 2003 after 14 years. Her family still recalls hearing from her colleagues at her “standing room only” retirement party, how she brightened their workday.
Proud does not begin to describe the feeling she had for her children and grandchildren. She made each one of them feel as though they were her favorite. It was a rare time that you would stop by Judy’s house and there would not be one of her kids or grandkids there. Whether it was for the day or an overnight stay, Nana & Papa’s house was the place to be. There, you had all of the comforts of home, and always fresh cinnamon rolls in the morning.
Judy loved days in the Adirondacks, specifically Hague Beach, and family vacations on Hilton Head and Cape Cod. We can see her smiling face with the sun at her back and her Red Sox mug in hand in the cabana on Hilton Head. Most of all, she loved spending time with her family.
Judy is survived by her loving husband of 50 years, Peter; her daughters Amy Harlow (Ryan Thomas) and Carrie Leyhane (Kevin); sons Peter Buckley (Courtney) and Kevin Buckley (Taryn).
She was the best Nana to Abbey, Frank, Bella, Avery, Emma, Dylan, Grayson, Eamon, and Nora. She was always there to make each of them feel special, with her signature kisses, hugs and songs.
Survivors, in addition to her children and grandchildren, include her brothers William Cowieson III, (Bess), Thomas Cowieson (Su), and Michael Cowieson (Kim); sister Ellen Cowieson; brother in-law Michael Buckley (Linda) and sister-in-law Chris Buckley. Judy is also survived by nine nieces & nephews.
She is also survived by several other family members and cherished friends. Judy loved life and will be greatly missed by all of her family and friends including lifelong friends Diane, Joanne and Margie.
Judy was predeceased by her mother Mary Ruth Cowieson (Schumaker) and father William Cowieson Jr.; brother Robert Cowieson; mother-in-law Catherine Ruth Buckley (Nugent) and father-in-law Charles Buckley; brothers-in-law Gerald Buckley and Paul Buckley; and sister-in-law Catherine Lois Buckley.
While none of us who knew her will ever be the same, we most certainly will be better having had her in our lives. We know that she is smiling down on us now and will be forever our protector. Judy’s legacy will live on through her children and grandchildren.
At a time when social and physical distancing is the safest option for all, the family is respecting the recommendation for services to be limited to immediate family. We will celebrate the beautiful life that Judy lived, with all family and friends who loved her, at a more appropriate time.
The family wishes to thank the MICU doctors and nurses and nursing aides in the Medical-Surgical ICU D3N at Albany Medical Center. The genuine love and care they provided brought both Judy and our family such comfort during this unimaginable time.
For those wishing to remember Judy in a special way, a memorial contribution may be made to the Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) Foundation, a national organization dedicated to advancing research and creating hope for those affected by IPF https://ipffoundation.org/ or Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, 21301 S Tamiami Trail Suite 320 PMB 226, Estero, FL 33928.