The Madison St Patrick's Day Parade Committee is pleased to announce the Cranley Family as this year's Irish
Family of the Year.
The patriarch of the Cranley family is Edward P. Cranley Jr., a retired civil engineer with deep Irish roots. The Cranleys first immigrated to the United States from Tipperary in the Late 1840’s. Edward’s Mother Anne was the daughter of John Corr of Bally James Duff and Mary “Mamie” Kelly whose family hailed from Galway. Mary Kelly’s brother Edward was a famous (or infamous depending on your perspective) mayor of Chicago. Their family immigration story was told in the 2009 novel, Galway Bay by cousin Mary Pat Kelly. The Cranleys, Corrs and Kellys have been based in the Chicago area for most of the last century.
Edward is a 1960 graduate of the University of Notre Dame. After graduation he married his college sweetheart Mecca Swanson. Mecca also had some Irish ancestors but the story is far too hazy and convoluted for this tale. After being briefly exiled to Oklahoma, Edward and Mecca settled in the Madison area to raise their family in 1968. Seven children and two successful careers followed, Edward with Mead and Hunt and later with his own consulting business and Mecca as a professor in the Nursing School at the UW. In 1991 Mecca was named Dean of Nursing at the University at Buffalo and Edward, Mecca and their youngest son Peter relocated to New York. Meanwhile the older six children all wandered off to college and to start life on their own. One by one throughout the nineties they married and, recalling their own idyllic childhoods, returned to Madison to raise their families. Following Mecca’s untimely passing from cancer in 2006 Edward returned to Madison to oversee the multi-generational project to repopulate the West side entirely with Cranleys. Edward and all seven of his children and 16 grandchildren live on the west side with none further west than one block past Midvale, save Peter who is in Middleton.
The Madison Cranleys include:
Martha Cranley and her husband Larry Martin. Martha is Director of Community Impact and Strategic Communication for United Way of Dane County. Larry is Director of Member Services for the State Bar of Wisconsin. Their children are Michael, Samuel and Mary Kate.
Edward Patrick Cranley III (Pat) and Sue Cranley. Pat is Vice President, Plan Development for WPS Health Insurance and Sue is a 4K Aide and head of household engineering for the Adams Cranleys. Pat and Sue have three children, Edward Patrick IV (Teddy), Juliana and Aidan.
Dr. Elizabeth Cranley is an Associate Research Scientist at the Wisconsin Center for Educational Research at the UW. She has two children, Fiona and Eyasu
Paul Cranley and Susy Cranley. Paul is a partner at Whyte, Hirschboeck and Dudek S.C. and Susy is CEO Edgehill Asylum and a self-employed Spanish inrterpreter/translator. Paul and Susy have three children, Sophia, Emma and Paul.
Anne Cranley Higgins and Tim Higgins. Anne is a Registered Nurse (like her Mama) at St. Mary’s Hospital and Tim is Mechanical Engineering Manager at Gilson Inc. Anne and Tim have two children, Sydney and Thomas.
Philip Cranley and Gabriel Cranley. Phil is an Education Data Consultant for the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction – Office of Student Assesment and Gabriel is Therapy Director at Capitol Lakes Retirement Center. Phil and Gabby have three children, Owen, Joe and Lucy
Peter Cranley, who works for the Retail Division of ATT inexplicably, lives in Middleton. We are working on it.