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Eleanor Voorhies

Eleanor Voorhies Obituary
Eleanor Fordham Voorhies, 97, passed away peacefully surrounded by family and friends on the tenth of January, 2013. Born November 17th, 1915 in Brooklyn, NY moved to Pennsylvania and later to Canada before settling in South Hampton, New York where she was raised by her grandparents. Eleanor attended Park College in Kansas, graduating with BS in Biology, and completed her Masters Degree at the Yale School of Nursing. Following her graduation from Yale in 1940 she worked for two years as a public health nurse in New Haven, CT. In 1942, she volunteered to join the Yale, US Army medical unit, deploying to New Zealand after the bombing at Pearl Harbor. The trip took 19 days, but the experience to serve my country and care for our soldiers for three years during the war was a defining time in (her life). After the war Eleanor earned a Masters degree in public health at Columbia University on the GI Bill. She later moved to Boston and became the education director of Boston Visiting Nurses Association. She began her academic career as a professor at Simons College, then onto Boston College, where she became Chairperson of the Public Health Program, and eventually Acting Dean at Boston College. While at BC she co-authored a book on public health nursing. She went on to become the Dean of the School of Nursing at Fitchburg State College before retiring in 1979 at the age of sixty four. In retirement Eleanor traveled to Jamaica to run a program evaluating public health on the islands. She also studied public health in Norway and taught in Sweden. Later she and her friends took a trip around the world. Before she retired for good she said, I want to go to Africa. She then spent 2 years in Botswana helping the local government develop a public health nursing program. After returning from Africa she served as a hospice volunteer at Emerson Hospital in Concord, MA, for 8 years. Eleanor was an active member of the UCC Church in Boxborough, MA, where she served as Deacon longer than any other church member on record. She loved the Arts, especially the Boston Ballet, the Boston Symphony, and the Handle and Haydn Society. She gave generously to many charities. Eleanor is survived by Cheryl, Paul, Eric, and Devon DiPaolo, her dear friend Kaethe Bierbach, her beloved cat Felix, and a large circle of friends whose lives she touched profoundly. Services shall be held at the United Church of Christ, 723 Massachusetts Ave (Rte 111) Boxborough, MA, on Saturday January 19th, 2013, beginning at 11:00am. The service will be followed by a luncheon at the church. In lieu of flowers, donations in her name may be made to Emerson Hospital, payable to Emerson Health Care Foundation, 133 ORNAC,Concord, MA 01742; online at www.emersonhospital.org/Support/Giving.aspx or to the Boston Ballet, payable to Boston Ballet, Office of Institutional Advancement, 19 Clarendon St., Boston MA 02116, online at www.bostonballet.org/storefront/donate-now.ep Online condolences at www.actonfuneralhome.com

Published in The Boxborough Beacon from Jan. 16 to Jan. 23, 2013
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