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Of Irish descent, she became blind due to an eye infection and then she died from venereal disease when Tom was twelve. She was described as "near moronic and slovenly," and it was rumored that she passed on her eye infection to her son. For this reason he was shunned by people in the neighborhood until Sonny Corleone found him and brought him home, where he would later be adopted by Vito Corleone. Bridget's death and Tom's subsequent eye infection affected him so much that well into adulthood he would have nightmares about he and his children going blind and begging in the streets.