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1936 - 2019
COULIS, Despine Louise M.D. Lowell Pediatrician and Salem High Class of 1954 Valedictorian Despine Coulis, M.D., of St. Louis, MO, passed away at home on Tuesday night, May 28, 2019, surrounded by family, after a brief yet fierce fight against metastatic breast cancer. She was born October 3, 1936, in Salem, MA, to Louis Angelo and Catherine (Coukis) Coulis. She attended Salem High School, graduating in 1954 as Valedictorian of her class. She earned her Bachelor's degree from Smith College, Northampton, MA, in 1958. From an early age, Despine wanted to be a physician. She was one of only eight women in her medical school class at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. After completing her residency in Pediatrics, Despine settled in New Haven, CT, working in public health in order to help children and their families. Dr. Coulis and her family moved to St. Louis, MO, in 1972, where she continued her important work in the public health sector and eventually joined the private practice of St. Johns Pediatrics. In 1984, Dr. Coulis returned to Massachusetts, serving the community at Greater Lowell Pediatrics until 2000. Returning to St. Louis to be with her daughter and grandchildren, she continued working as a medical consultant for the State of Missouri until this past March. Her greatest pleasures were the symphony, the opera and the arts, her extensive world travels - and especially her grandchildren. Despine touched hearts wherever she went, loved by everyone and growing her great wealth of knowledge right up to her death, continually taking college courses. Despine leaves behind her daughter, Catherine (Gary) Bryant, grandchildren Emma, Claire, and Sam Troxell, all of St. Louis, MO, beloved sister, Constance (Steve) Prochniak of Andover, MA, wonderful sister-in-law Karen Coulis of Summit, NJ, and nieces Susan (Ted) Helms of Darien, CT, Darlene (Bob) Bohm of Shelton, CT, Meredith Coulis of New York City, and Monica Coulis of Los Angeles, CA. She also leaves her Aunt Toni, many great-nieces and nephews, cousins and friends who will miss her encouragement, wisdom, and frequent packets of newspaper clippings. She was preceded in death by her parents and her brother, Peter Coulis. A Celebration of Despine's zest for Life will take place at a future date. Despine donated her body to St. Louis University Medical School, in keeping with her giving nature and desire to contribute to future generations. Her family requests that, in lieu of flowers, contributions may be given in Dr. Coulis's memory to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., Attn: Online Services, 123 William St., 10th Fl., New York, NY 10038, or online at plannedparenthood.org or to the St Louis Symphony Orchestra, Attn: Office of Philanthropy, 718 North Grand Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63103 or online at slso.org

View the online memorial for Despine Louise M.D. COULIS
Published in The Boston Globe on June 2, 2019
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