|From left: Shirley Parham of St. Mary’s activities staff, Ashley and Sister Mary June Morin spent some time together in Sister’s office during Sister’s last day on the job today after 51 years at St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children.|
Fifty-one years ago today, Sister Mary June Morin arrived in Norfolk to work at what was then St. Mary’s Infant Home. She spent the ensuing decades working, as she likes to put it, “in all the corners of St. Mary’s,” from doing laundry to teaching Montessori school to arranging activities.
Sister, the last nun on St. Mary’s staff, is finally going to get a well-deserved chance to relax. Today was her last day on the job at St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children. She arrived at her usual time — about 4:30 a.m. She worked on scrapbooks detailing St. Mary’s history, handed over paperwork to staff who will be assuming her duties and, of course, played with the children.
On Wednesday, St. Mary’s will honor Sister with a special luncheon celebration. Sister has already promised to come back to the Home as a volunteer. Still, we all will miss her daily presence. She is the heart of St. Mary’s Home.
UPDATE: Here’s a story about Sister from WAVY-TV 10:
|Seated: Ashley, left, and Amelia, right. Standing, from left to right: Annie MacRae and her mother, Ann MacRae; Amelia’s mother, Myra Perdue; and Martha Price Stewart, director of development at St. Mary’s Home for Disabled Children. (photo by Nicole Hoskins Jones)
When it comes to tea parties, Amelia is a natural. How could she not be, since, as her mother noted, Amelia is from the South, where folks drink plenty of tea?
Amelia recently donned a fancy hat and dress and headed to the charming tearoom at Rowena’s in Norfolk for a luncheon. Rowena’s founder, Rowena Fullinwider, is an associate member of the Auxiliary Board of St. Mary’s Home. Joining Amelia were Ashley, who, like Amelia, lives at St. Mary’s Home; Amelia’s mother, Myra Perdue; and some special friends: Martha Price Stewart, St. Mary’s director of development, and Stewart’s sister, Ann MacRae, and niece, Annie MacRae, who were visiting from North Carolina.
“I suppose we could change Amelia’s name just a bit to Amelia Belle,” said her mother. “This was Amelia’s first time attending a tea party. However, it is the beginning of many to come.”
The trip to the tearoom is just one of the many field trips into the community that St. Mary’s recreational therapy staff organize for the children. For example, on Saturday, Trent, Antwoine, Camille, Dreshawn and Tyquawn visited the Virginia Air & Space Center in Hampton — thanks to tickets generously donated by Adams Outdoor Advertising. And Kishaun, Nate G., Katie A., Meagan E. and Molly went to see the holiday lights along the boardwalk at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.
The January issue of Tidewater Women includes a feature about St. Mary’s Home, which is celebrating its 65th anniversary, and St. Mary’s Auxiliary Board, which will hold a fundraiser auction next month. You can read the article online by going to the magazine’s website and clicking on the photo of the cover to open a PDF of the issue. The article about St. Mary’s is on page 15.
St. Mary’s Auxiliary Board’s 5th Annual Gala and Auction will take place Saturday, Feb. 20 at 6 p.m. at The Westin Town Center in Virginia Beach. To reserve tickets, donate, volunteer or request sponsorship information, contact Karen Hibbard at (757) 622-2208 ext. 331 or send her an email.
In this photo taken for the magazine, Sister Mary June Morin of St. Mary’s Home (right) listens as Nancy Wilcox of St. Mary’s Auxiliary reads to Ashley in St. Mary’s library.
The hall outside the Occupational Therapy Support Services Department at St. Mary’s Home is decorated like Santa’s Workshop. Inside the department, technician Mamie McCloud is busy as one of Santa’s elves, especially at this time of year. She adapts toys so children with severe disabilities can use them. With an array of tools, she deftly replaces small switches with large buttons that are easier for the children to push to make toys dance or play music.
Mamie is profiled today in a nice feature in The Virginian-Pilot newspaper of Norfolk; you can read the story here.