New London - Dorothy "Dottie" Marie Byrd, 85, of New London, entered eternal life on Monday, July 9, 2012, at home, in the arms of her children.
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She was born Dec. 21,1926, in New London, the daughter of the late Edgar and Maria (Adams) Derrick. She attended Nameaug and Jennings Schools. She graduated from Chapman Technical High School in 1944 and then graduated from Kings County Hospital School of Nursing, Brooklyn, N.Y. in 1947. She worked at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital in the obstetrics (maternity) department. She began working at General Dynamics Electric Boat as an occupational health nurse in March, 1959 and retired April, 1992.
She was an alumni member of Kings County Hospital School of Nursing, the Chapman Technical School Alumni Association, the Eastern Connecticut Association of Occupational Health Nurses and the Stella Maris Chapter of Catholic Nurses. Dottie was a communicant of St. Joseph Parish.
Dottie was loved so much by her family and friends and she found great pleasure in hosting many dinners and get-togethers. She was a life long birder and a member of the National Audubon Society. She was constantly learning and teaching her children about the natural world. They grew up with a pair of binoculars and a guide book on the kitchen table and there were always bird feeders outside the window. After retirement, she volunteered for numerous events at St. Joseph Church and in the community. She traveled to many countries around the world with friends and family members and her photo books are filled with many momentos.
Her infectious smile and that twinkle in her eye shall never be forgotten as well as well as her good will towards those she met. Her open heart was boundless and joyful.
She is survived by two children, Thomas Byrd of New London and Janet Byrd and her daugher-in-law, Elise Roy, of Holyoke, Mass.; two siblings, Lionel Derrick of Arizona and Edith Gilliam of Waterford; six nieces, five nephews, and 12 grand-nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her son, Charles Byrd; and four siblings, Charles Derrick, Georgiana Derrick, Elmira Havens and Chloetilde Derrick.
The Byrd family would like to thank their family and friends for all their love and support. And especially a grateful thank you to her incredible team of caregivers: Tiffany Harris, Sylvia Richardson, Alicia Howard, Jen Folson and to Dawn McDermott of Hospice Southeastern Connecticut for their love and devotion to our mom. Our journey these past months has been graced by all of you.
Her family will receive relatives and friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, July 13 at the Impellitteri-Malia Funeral Home, 84 Montauk Ave., New London. Family and friends are asked to gather for a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. Saturday, July 14, in St. Joseph Church, 17 Montauk Ave., New London. Interment in St. Mary Cemetery is private.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made on Dottie's behalf to the St. Joseph Endowment Fund, New London, CT 06320.
Published in The Day on July 12, 2012