Sister Rose O'Brien, registered nurse, dies

She was a longtime Bon Secours nun

  • Sister Rose O’Brien
Sister Rose O’Brien
December 19, 2010|By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun

Sister Rose O'Brien, a member of the Sisters of Bon Secours and a registered nurse who was a retired chief medical technologist, died Dec. 9 of heart failure at her order's provincial house in Marriottsville. She was 95.

Margaret O'Brien was born and raised in Philadelphia, where she graduated from John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls' High School.

Sister Rose became acquainted with the Sisters of Bon Secours while volunteering at St. Edmond's Home for Crippled Children in Bryn Mawr, Pa.

"I felt I had a vocation, but did not want to be a teaching or cloistered nun," Sister Rose wrote in autobiographical notes. "At St. Edmond's, I was drawn to help the little ones in need and that was what our lives were about. Going where there was a need."

She entered the Sisters of Bon Secours in 1932 and professed her final vows in 1941.

After earning her nursing degree in 1937 from the Bon Secours School of Nursing in Baltimore, Sister Rose remained at the school where she was an instructor in pediatric nursing.

From 1942 to 1963, she taught microbiology and was a medical technologist in the Bon Secours Hospital.

In 1963, Sister Rose became a clinical laboratory medical technician at Bon Secours Hospital in Methuen, Mass., where she worked for two years.

After moving to Richmond, Va., in 1965, Sister Rose taught at the School of Medical Technology and worked at St. Mary's Hospital as a medical technician until being promoted to chief medical technologist. She was also certified in blood bank technology.

She retired in 1991 and continued living in Richmond until moving to her order's provincial house in Marriottsville.

"She was a pretty hard worker and that took up most of her life," said Sister Rose Marie Jasinski, who is president of the Sisters of Bon Secours.

Sister Rose was an avid traveler and enjoyed spending time with her family.

A Mass of Christian burial was offered Dec. 13 at the provincial house.

Surviving are a brother, the Rev. Joseph O'Brien of Philadelphia; and a niece, Jane Mooney of Ocean City.

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