Sr. Mary of Providence DionDecember 12, 1919 ~ April 9, 2017 (age 97)
Sister of Providence, Sr. Mary of Providence Dion, died on April 8, 2017 in the 73rd year of her religious life. Born Beatrice Lena Dion in Worcester, MA, she was the daughter of the late Ferdinand and Cora Rose-Emma (Birtz) Dion.After attending the High School of Commerce, Worcester, MA, she enrolled in the School of Nursing program at St. Vincent Hospital, Worcester, where she graduated in 1943 and became a Registered Nurse. She entered the Sisters of Providence Congregation in 1944 and, after completing her formation program, was assigned to floor duty at the Providence Hospital in Holyoke. Sister then served as nurse and head nurse at the Mercy Hospital in Springfield. In 1953, Sr. Mary of Providence graduated from the Mercy Hospital School of Anesthesia and then worked over the next seven years as a nurse anesthetist at the Mercy and Providence Hospitals, at the former Farren Memorial Hospital in Montague City, MA, and at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester. Following studies at Boston College where she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in 1961, Sister was assigned to St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester, where she became Supervisor of their School of Anesthesiology and also served as a part-time instructor at Quinsigamond Community College. In 1966, Sister also became the Director of the St. Vincent School of Inhalation Therapy.In 1974 Sister began a new ministry as the Sisters of Providence Retirement Coordinator and developed a comprehensive program. In 1981, she had an internship in nursing home administration at Stella Maris Hospital in Towson, MD and was later appointed administrator of the Beaven-Kelly Home in Holyoke and of St. Luke's Home in Springfield, where she served until her resignation in 1989.Sr. Mary of Providence then undertook a three-month residential program in pastoral studies and spiritual renewal at the Tantur Ecumenical Institute in Jerusalem in 1989. Upon her return to the US, Sister served three years as co-chair of the Sisters of Providence Associate Program and then became a volunteer at the former Queen of Peace Centennial House in Greenfield, MA. Sister was a Board member of the American Registry of Inhalation Therapists and the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists; was elected to a life membership in the America Association for Respiratory Therapists; and was President and Vice President of the Board of the Greater New England Society of Inhalation Therapy; a member of the Worcester Diocesan Council of Catholic Nurses, the Corporation Board of Mt. St. Vincent Nursing Home and the Board of Mercyknoll, Inc. of West Hartford. CT.Sister Mary of Providence was predeceased by her brother, Rev. Louis Dion, AA and her sister, Sr. Therese Dion, SSA. She is survived by her Sisters in Community, and by three sisters and a brother.The Wake will be held on Tuesday, April 11, 2017 at 3:30 – 6:30 pm at Providence Place, 5 Gamelin Street, Holyoke, MA; Liturgy of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Wednesday, April 12, 2017 at 10 a.m. in the Providence Place Chapel. The Dillon Funeral Home Inc., 124 Chestnut St., Holyoke, MA has been entrusted with the arrangements. Memorial donations may be made to the Sisters of Providence, 5 Gamelin St., Holyoke, MA 01040.