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placeholder May 20, 2013   •   VOL. 51, NO. 10   •   Oakland, CA

Sister Carmel Curry, DC

Sister Carmel Curry, DC

Sister Carmel Curry, a pediatric nurse and educator who spent a number of years in ministry in the Diocese of Oakland, died April 19 at her community's assisted living center in Los Altos. She was 97 and had been a member of the Sisters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul for 80 years.

Born Catherine Carmel Curry in San Francisco, she began her postulancy on Feb. 14, 1932 at Holy Cross School in Santa Cruz, and made vows for the first time on June 27, 1937. She graduated with her nursing degree from St. Vincent Hospital School of Nursing in Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1941, and was graduated with a bachelor of science and education degree in nursing from De Paul University in Chicago, Illinois, in 1950.

Since the age of 13 Sister Carmel's dream was to become a missionary in China to help the children in need. However, she ended up teaching in Iowa, followed by pediatric nursing ministry at hospitals in Indiana, Alabama, and Texas. Years later Sister Carmel's prayers to serve as a missionary were answered when she was sent to Japan. From 1960 to 1990, she worked at the Crippled Children's Home in Wakayama for 18 years, and then taught religion and health for 12 years. She also taught English at the Marist Brothers International School in Kobe. During the summers of 1980 and 1981, she assisted in Vietnamese refugee camps in the Philippines. In her later years she served as a visitor to the sick at Seton Medical Center in Daly City.

At the age of 75 her time as a missionary came to a close and Sister Carmel asked to be assigned to her home province in California. Upon her return, she served as the volunteer coordinator at St. Vincent de Paul Free Dining Room in Oakland and, subsequently, served in parish ministry at All Saints Parish in Hayward.

A consummate fan of the Oakland A's baseball team, Sister Carmel followed her team religiously, and they returned the adoration. "On her 85th birthday, she was in attendance at the game and they flashed a 'Happy 85th Birthday, Sr. Carmel' sign on the scoreboard. She was quite pleased," said Sister Mark Sandy, who worked with Sister Carmel at the St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room for many years.

Sister Carmel was a well-loved and respected Daughter of Charity, according to Sister Marion Bill, healthcare councillor, Daughters of Charity, Province of the West. "I lived in Hayward with Sister Carmel for eight years. She was a dear and lovely friend not only to me, but to everyone. She served those living in poverty with love and compassion. She truly lived the values of our founders, St. Vincent de Paul, St. Louise de Marillac and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, throughout her long life. She will be missed by all those fortunate to have known her."

The funeral Mass was celebrated April 23 in the Labouré Chapel at Seton Provincialate in Los Altos Hills. After the funeral Mass, the bells at the Provincialate rang out 80 times to mark and honor the 80 years of Sister Curry's religious vocation.

Sister Carmel resided at Labouré Residence at the time of her death. She is survived by her sister-in-law, Beryl Curry of San Francisco; nephew, Richard Slattery of Orange County; and many great nieces and nephews.

Sister Carmel was laid to rest at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Los Altos.

Sister Patricia Gilligan, CSJ

Sister Patricia Gilligan, CSJ

Sister Patricia Anne Gilligan, a longtime educator who served at schools in Northern and Southern California, died April 26 in Los Angeles at the age of 84. She had been a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet since 1947.

Sister Gilligan was born in San Francisco and educated at Star of the Sea Academy. Having been taught by the St. Joseph of Carondelet Sisters all through school, she was drawn to their way of life.

Sister Gilligan started off as an elementary school teacher in 1949. She taught at every grade level and was principal at four elementary schools, including Queen of All Saints in Concord. She also took on several positions at Carondelet High School, also in Concord.

She was also a die-hard sports fan, according to the obituary released by her community. Her favorite teams: the San Francisco Giants, the 49ers and Notre Dame.

Her sister, Eleanor Dolan, survives her.

The funeral Mass was held at the Carondelet Center. Burial was at Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City.

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