Obituary: Frances “Fran” T. O’Brien, 92, of Stratford
Frances “Fran” T. O’Brien, age 92, passed away peacefully in her home, surrounded by her family on April 7, 2014.
She was the daughter of the late Lawrence and Helen Trimble, predeceased by her sister Alice Hawley, her brother William Trimble and their respective spouses, Richard and Phyllis. Her sister and brother always called her “Frank.”
Fran is survived by her children, Jim (Earl James, Jr.) of Stratford, Bill (William) and his wife, Terri of Salem Township, Maine, Mary Alice and her husband, John Ponsillo of Shelton, Larry (Lawrence) of Shelton; and her granddaughter, Alicia Helene of Shelton. She also leaves her nieces and nephews, Bonnie Boyhen of Stratford, Ellen Laskowski of Stratford, Sue Lunsford, Cathy Wightman, and Chuck Trimble, all of California, Larry Trimble of Washington, and their families.
Fran was born in Bridgeport on July 23, 1921 and lived in Stratford for 59 years. She graduated from Warren Harding High School and the Bridgeport Hospital School of Nursing in 1942. She joined the Army Nursing Corp during WWII and honorably served in Italy and France until honorably discharged on April 7, 1944. She achieved the rank of 2nd LT. After discharge, she went to New York City where she was employed by St. Luke’s Hospital.
When she returned to Connecticut, her nursing career was spent at Bridgeport Hospital, the GE Medical Dept, Park City Hospital Emergency Department, and Sylvan Manor per diem. She retired from Milford Hospital.
She was always happy to say that she “never had a job she didn’t like” and one of her favorites was Camp Pomperaug Boy Scout Camp where she was the camp nurse for two summers when her children were young. Fran kept her RN license active long after official retirement, and was source of medical information and resident nurse for family, friends, and neighbors her whole life. She was generous and would put others needs before her own.
She was an avid reader, loved animals (especially dogs), UConn basketball, NASCAR, root beer floats, hot dogs, birch beer soda, and ice cream. Her children remember while growing up that she always made cookies when it snowed and decorated the house for all the holidays, big and not so big. A dreaded chore (particularly by her daughter) was her sending us kids to the attic to get something she needed and it was always “at the top of the stairs” no matter what it was! She made a delicious cheesecake and potato salad, and none of us will eat cole slaw because hers was the best.
Fran volunteered for the American Red Cross blood drives, was a member of the St. James Women’s Guild, and the Alumni Association I and II of the Bridgeport Hospital School of Nursing. Fran had many, many friends throughout her life, and her door was always open to anyone who “needed an ear,” some private conversation, a pit stop, or just wanted to say hello. During the last years of her life, friends and family visited and called her often.
The family wishes to acknowledge her special friends Marlene Beatty, Rose Poplawksi, and Barbara Fisher. A special thank you to Cheryl Impellitteri, without whose help and support during the good days and the bad, Fran would not have been able to stay at home during her illness.
McDonald’s Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. It was Fran’s request that no services be held in her memory, and her children will respect this wish.
Donations can be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 78517, Topeka, Kansas 66675.
Fran sends her love and thanks to all of you “for giving me this good life.”
For additional information or to leave a message of condolence, visit www.wrmcdonaldfuneralhome.com.