Sister Rosemary Sullivan, RSM
Sister Rosemary Sullivan, RSM – in Burlingame, CA, on Sunday, January 21, 2018, at the age of 90. Jean Sullivan was born in San Francisco, the second child of the four children of Russell Sullivan and Winifred (Henderson). Growing up in the Mission District in San Francisco, she attended St. Peter's High School, staffed by the Sisters of Mercy. Upon graduation from high school in 1945, Jean entered the Sisters of Mercy in Burlingame, where she professed vows in 1948, taking the religious name of Sister Rosemary. She began her ministerial life teaching in elementary education at St Catherine's School, Burlingame, St. Aloysius School, Los Angeles and St. Peter's School, San Francisco. In 1953 Sister moved to secondary education as a science teacher at Mercy High School, Burlingame, where she taught for the next thirteen years. Her educational background included a Bachelor of Arts degree from Dominican College, San Rafael, a Master of Science degree from the University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana, and a Doctorate in microbiology, from Notre Dame in 1970. After receiving her doctoral degree, she returned to Burlingame where she served as dean and faculty member for the Mercy- sponsored Russell College. This assignment was cut short in 1971 when she was elected to serve on the leadership team of the Burlingame Sisters of Mercy. In 1974 Sister was elected Superior General, a position she completed in 1981. After these years in community leadership, Sister served in various administrative positions, including service in sponsored educational and health care ministries, and as secretary to the sisters' leadership team. In 1993 Sister Rosemary became assistant to the principal at Mercy High School, San Francisco, where she served until 2015. She responded generously to every ministry where she was called to serve, and will be remembered as a devoted, quiet leader, and a gentle presence in the community. Sister Rosemary was predeceased by an older brother, Russell Sullivan, Jr. She is survived by her sisters Shirley Buswell of Bend, Oregon, and Hazel Butticci, of Concord, California, several nieces, nephews and cousins, and her loving community of the Sisters of Mercy. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Mercy Convent Chapel, 2300 Adeline Drive, Burlingame, at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, February 5, followed by burial at Holy Cross Cemetery. Memorial gifts may be made to the Sisters of Mercy, 2300 Adeline Drive, Burlingame, CA 94010.