Sister Elizabeth Donohue, 87, Catholic school teacher

May 27, 2002|By Linda Linley | Linda Linley,SUN STAFF

Sister Elizabeth Ann Donohue, whose more than a half-century as a Roman Catholic elementary school teacher included 31 years in Baltimore, died Wednesday of heart disease complicated by a stroke at Villa St. Michael, the Daughters of Charity Emmitsburg Province retirement residence that had been her home since 1999. She was 87.

Born Mary Elizabeth Donohue in Rome, N.Y., she graduated from St. Aloysius Academy there in 1934 before entering the Daughters of Charity order in 1936. She took her vows in 1941.

Sister Elizabeth Ann spent 53 years as a teacher in New York, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia, beginning her career in 1938 at St. Mary's Home in Norfolk, Va. Her assignments in the Baltimore area included St. Vincent's Infant Home and St. Dominic, St. John's, St. Charles and St. Martin schools.

She earned a degree in 1960 from St. Joseph College in Emmitsburg, and attended Temple University in Philadelphia and Loyola College in Baltimore.

In 1991, Sister Elizabeth Ann joined the pastoral care department at St. Agnes Hospital, where she visited and comforted patients. She then moved in 1994 to the same position at St. Vincent's Medical Center in Jacksonville, Fla. She retired to Villa St. Michael in 1999.

"She really enjoyed teaching, and became a mentor to new young teachers," said Sister Elizabeth Ann Tonroe of the Emmitsburg province.

She became adept at using e-mail and playing games on the computer, Sister Elizabeth Ann Tonroe added. "We had computer instruction for the sisters at St. Joseph's Provincial House, and Sister Elizabeth used the e-mail to keep in contact with her family and friends," she said.

She also was an expert seamstress and an avid reader.

A Mass was offered Saturday at the Basilica of the National Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Emmitsburg.

She is survived by a sister, Sister Walter Marie Donohue, a nun with the order of St. Francis in Utica, N.Y.; a brother, Samuel F. Donohue of New York; two nieces; and two nephews.

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