Melissa E. Rooney, 47, of Mt. Airy, a social worker at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, died Sept. 18 of cancer at Good Shepherd Hospice in Philadelphia.

At the time of her death, Ms. Rooney was manager of transplant social work and patient finance for the Jefferson Transplant Institute. She began her career at Jefferson in 1995 working with HIV-infected patients.

She was highly respected by the doctors and social workers with whom she worked for her empathy and professionalism. She also was well-known in the Mt. Airy community for helping to organize cooperative child summer camps and baby-sitting groups.

Born in Baltimore and raised in Drexel Hill, she was a graduate of Upper Darby High School and St. Joseph’s University, where she majored in sociology and psychology and was a cofounder of the Women’s Center. It was at St. Joseph’s that she met her future husband, Victor Gatmaitan, whom she married in 1998.

Ms. Rooney earned a master’s degree in social work at Columbia University and a master’s degree in women’s studies at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland.

She was an expert cook, specializing in pastry.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by sons Ciaran, Mateo and Marcelo; her parents John and Sally Rooney; sisters Moira Rooney and Molly McKeever; and a brother, John Rooney.

Funeral services were held Oct. 1 at Germantown Friends Meeting. Memorial donations may be made to Women Against Abuse, 100 S. Broad St., Suite 1341, Philadelphia, PA 19110, or to The Food Trust, One Penn Center, Suite 900, 1617 John F. Kennedy Blvc., Philadelphia, PA 19103. – WF

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