Dorothy Mary Clarebout O’Shaughnessy
Dorothy was born in Dublin on May 15, 1931 to parents Douglas and Dorothy Clarebout. She spent her early years between Dublin and southern England. Dorothy earned her Nursing degree in 1953 from the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing in Winchester, England. She earned her Midwives degree in 1954 from the Royal College of Midwives in London. Dorothy started her nursing career riding a bicycle through the streets of East London delivering babies. She joined the World Health Organization, which took her around the globe to Africa, Asia, South America, Central America, Canada and the United States. After travelling for several years, she settled in Canada. She worked at Mt. Royal Hospital in Montreal for a year and then drove across Canada to St. Paul, Alberta where she worked for another year. She moved to Vancouver, British Columbia in 1959 and worked at St Vincent’s hospital. Within a few months of moving to Vancouver, she met the love of her life, and future husband Patrick, on a blind date. They married in 1960.
The next big move was to New York in 1964. Dorothy worked in the ICU at Jewish Memorial Hospital in NY for 7 years. Their son Kieran was born in 1965 and in 1969 Patrick and Dorothy bought their beloved cottage in Poland, Maine. In 1971 the family moved to Walpole, Massachusetts, which cut the travel time to Maine in half.
In 1971 Dorothy joined the staff at Norwood Hospital as an ICU nurse. She also worked in the ER for many years. In 1976 Dorothy earned her Master’s Degree in Nursing from Boston University. Eventually she moved to the Nursing Education Department and became an administrator at the hospital. She served as a mentor and teacher to many. She helped countless young LPN nurses gain their RN degrees. She also trained first responders from all over the state. From 1976 to 1996 Dorothy participated in a 20 year nursing study with Harvard Medical School and Brigham & Women’s Hospital. On her retirement in 1996, after 25 years of service, a nursing scholarship was established at Norwood Hospital in her honor.
Dorothy was very active in her community. She served as President of the Walpole Women’s Club and chaired many committees. She also devoted a significant amount of time establishing the butterfly garden at Adams Farm in Walpole.
Dorothy was a talented artist. She could paint, draw, needlepoint and create anything with her hands. Her stained glass work was beautiful. She was a gifted gardener and lovingly transformed every garden that she worked in. In her youth she was a competitive tennis player and loved curling. She also enjoyed horseback riding, canoeing, water skiing, and downhill skiing. In her spare time, she loved reading, bird watching and spending time at the cottage in Maine with family and friends.
Dorothy Mary O’Shaughnessy nee Clarebout passed away peacefully on April 25 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s Disease. She leaves behind her loving husband of 60 years, her son Kieran, and his wife, Eleni and granddaughter Erin. Dorothy will also be greatly missed by her brother, Gerard Clarebout of Swansea, Wales and her many nieces and nephews around the world, including the US, Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, Canada, Spain, the Caribbean and Australia. She is predeceased by her only sister, Thora Leahy of Mullingar, Ireland.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the funeral and burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Dorothy’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association (www.alz.org).
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