In Memoriam


(1924-2019)

Now that she has gone before us, well marked with the sign of faith, she adds her value from heaven, cheering us as we refuse poverty and indignity, making sure God sees what we are doing and blesses us, and interceding for our work to rebuke evil and make poverty recede. Even recede by one half an inch.

These words are excerpted from an email sent to Adrian by Father Rick Frechette, CP, to be read at the wake service for Sister Philomena Perreault. Father Rick and Sister Philomena had spent many years working together in Haiti, right from the start of the Our Little Brothers and Sisters orphanage (Nos Petits Frères et Soeurs) which Father Frechette helped found in 1987.

Marie Therese Perreault was born on July 30, 1924, in Manchester, New Hampshire, the youngest of five children – the others being Lucien, Rita, Irene, and Leo, who was killed in World War II – born to Arthur and Marie (Arel) Perreault, French-Canadians who had immigrated to the United States. When she was two, her parents divorced, and she and her siblings were all sent to an orphanage. Her mother took her (and only her, out of all her children) back for good when Sister Philomena was ten years old.

Sister Philomena’s next stop was Eureka, California, after she completed her elementary education. She went to work at a medical clinic while attending high school and actually did not complete her schooling until years after the usual age for doing so. A retreat at the Vallombrosa Center in Menlo Park, California, in 1949 connected her with Sister Kevin Ryan of the Dominican Sisters of Everett, Washington (later to become the Edmonds Dominicans), and she ultimately decided she wished to become a religious.

Read more about Sister Philomena (pdf)

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.

 

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(1928-2019)

A woman of great generosity, who was a friend to everyone she met and who remained faithful to her prayer life and to daily Mass, even as she struggled more and more with memory loss in her last years: this was how Sister Beverly McEachin was remembered by her friend and fellow “crowd” member Sister Ann Romayne Fallon after her death on April 26, 2019.

“Beverly, you have been an inspiration to all who have known you over a lifetime but especially those who have witnessed your struggle with the loss of memory while never losing the ability to smile, to wave and make us realize you were our friend,” said Sister Ann Romayne as she concluded her homily at Sister Beverly’s funeral on May 3.

Sister Beverly McEachin was born on July 5, 1928, at St. Joseph’s Mercy Hospital in Detroit, the first child of Neil and Mildred (Piche) McEachin. Five more children came into the family over time: Robert, Patrick, Marilyn, Susan, and Gail.

Read more about Sister Beverly (pdf)

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. 

 

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(1936-2019)

“We knew Ellen as a Renaissance woman and a leader, who was always ready to build community and to take on any challenge that was given her. She had many talents stuffed in that little tool box of hers. … Ellen led in elegant ways and in simple ways.”

These words began the remarks by Mary “Pidge” Newbauer at Sister Ellen Murphy’s wake service on April 16, 2019. Mary and her husband, John, were longtime friends of Sister Ellen’s.

Sister Ellen Murphy was born on May 26, 1936, in Detroit to Joseph and Cecilia (Kenney) Murphy. Joseph and Cecilia were both born and raised in Springfield, Ohio, to Irish-immigrant parents, and came to Detroit during the Great Depression in search of work.

Early in their married life, the couple discovered they would likely never be able to have children, due to an injury Cecilia had suffered in childhood. “At first she was devastated, but she had a secret weapon unknown to the medical community: strong, lifelong devotion to the Blessed Mother under the title of ‘Mother of Perpetual Help,’” Sister Ellen wrote in her autobiography.

One week after Joseph and Cecilia’s tenth wedding anniversary, and six days after Cecilia’s fortieth birthday, Ellen Patricia Murphy came into the world at Detroit’s St. Joseph’s Mercy Hospital. Because of complications during the birth, she was immediately baptized in the delivery room. She was the couple’s only child.

Read more about Sister Ellen (pdf)

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.

Leave your comments and remembrances (if you don't see the comment box below, click on the "Read More" link).


(1932-2019)

The small city of Tucumcari, New Mexico, on the eastern side of the state not far from the Texas border, was home to St. Anne’s Parish School, staffed by Adrian Dominican Sisters – and to the Szabo family.

Louis Szabo and Florence Murphy – he of Hungarian descent and born in Alma, Texas, she of Irish extraction and from Clarksdale, Illinois – met in 1927, some years after both families had moved to New Mexico. Florence was a schoolteacher in Miera, New Mexico, when she decided to join a club for Catholic singles, and she and Louis were matched up as pen pals. Three years later, the couple married and settled in Tucumcari.

Louis was a machinist for the Rock Island-Southern Pacific Railroad as well as a farmer. He never finished high school, but he had taught himself how to repair locomotives, how to farm, and how to do electrical and plumbing work. “My dad was a silent, hard-working man who loved nature, had a thirst and respect for knowledge and was known all over this area for his helpfulness, honesty and generosity,” wrote his daughter Eleanora, the future Sister Ann Rozalia, in a July 28, 1980, St. Catherine letter.

Born on August 12, 1932, Eleanora Isobel Szabo was actually the second of twin daughters, but little Rozalia Ann died just five hours after her birth. Delivery took place at home, since the town had no hospital then, so when Florence developed severe complications Louis arranged for her, his sister Mary, and Eleanora to travel by train to Oklahoma City and a hospital there. One of the family’s goats, Bee-bee, also made the trip in a crate Louis made for her, in order to provide milk because Florence was unable to nurse her baby; but as it turned out, Bee-bee was so stressed by the travel that she quit giving milk and “I was a Carnation baby after that,” Sister Ann Rozalia wrote in her autobiography. 

Read more about Sister Ann Rozalia (pdf)

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.



Leave your comments and remembrances (if you don't see the comment box below, click on the "Read More" link).


Cemetery of the Adrian Dominican Sisters

Our Adrian Dominican cemetery with its circular headstones is a beautiful place of rest for women who gave their lives in service to God — and a peaceful place for contemplation and remembrance. 


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