As most of you know by now, we have lost our friend and colleague, Nell Hennessy. Nell finally succumbed to a long illness that she faced with the usual courage, determination and grace that she demonstrated throughout her life. However, characteristic of her general outlook and spirit, she did not let a little thing like a terminal illness interfere with the way she wanted to lead her life, the way she would use her time, and the matters she wanted to pursue.
I knew Nell for over 30 years and admired her great wisdom, energy and generosity of spirit. I engaged her to assist with responsibilities in my work at AT&T when she was in private practice, interfaced regularly with her when she was in government, and served as her colleague at ASA for awhile as she developed the idea for and implementation of Fiduciary Counselors. Nell was a unique and superior person in many ways. She was an unparalleled contributor to the health and vitality of the employee benefit system throughout her long legal career. She shared her knowledge, experience and wisdom with her colleagues, with the community in general, with other new professionals, and with anyone who sought her out or who might benefit from dialoguing with her. As my friend and colleague for many years, I admired her courage and integrity to tell me when I might have a less than stellar idea, and she helped me countless times when I might just be stumped by an issue or not sure what direction to pursue.
Nell constantly gave back to the legal and professional community she was part of. She spent countless hours assisting others and trying to assure that our benefits community and the benefits system grow and thrive as the world around us changes. Some of this dedication can be seen in her Bar activities, her teaching endeavors, and her general spirit of participation, sharing and generosity.
She had both the wisdom to be a scholar and the practicality to assure that things get done.
However, more than all that, Nell was a committed and generous family member and friend to both her immediate family and the broader family that she invited into her life and that invited her into theirs. I am greatly saddened to lose this unique, wonderful person, but she will live on with the personal and professional legacy she leaves behind.
Goodbye, my friend.
-- Scott Macey
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