Sister Mary Carmelia Cetrone, O.S.F., a retired teacher, died Wednesday of heart failure at Assisi House, the retirement home of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia in Aston, Pa. She was 90.
Sister Carmelia first came to Baltimore in 1924, teaching in elementary schools at St. Elizabeth's Church in East Baltimore and then, after 1928, at St. Vincent de Paul on Front Street.
She taught mathematics, Latin and French at the Catholic High School in East Baltimore from its opening in 1939 until 1957.
She also taught psychology at the St. Joseph Hospital nursing school during that period.
From 1957 until 1971, she taught at high schools in Wilmington, Del., and then was assigned to Our Lady of Mount Carmel High School in Middle River until 1981.
She retired in 1982 after a year at Catholic High.
At the Middle River school, she was affectionately called "Sister Bird" or "Carmie" by her students, according to Doris Argo, a 1947 graduate of Catholic High.
Mrs. Argo described Sister Carmelia as a small woman who was always active, telling her students that it was better to "wear out than to rust out."
She said Sister Carmelia was a magnificent teacher. "If you couldn't learn from her, there was something wrong with you," Mrs. Argo said.
"She had a heart of gold, was compassionate and outgoing and loved people," Mrs. Argo said.
The former Donata Cetrone was a native of Philadelphia and a graduate of the John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls' High School.
She entered the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia in 1922. She was a graduate of Mount St. Mary's College in Emmitsburg and earned a master's degree from the Catholic University in Washington.
She did graduate work at several institutions, including Loyola College and the Johns Hopkins University.
A Mass of Christian burial was to be offered at 11 a.m. today at Assisi House.
She is survived by a sister, Sister Mary Leota Cetrone, O.S.F., of Aston; three nephews;and several grandnieces and grandnephews.