Enjoyed learning and made nursing her career

MELROSE — Estelle Mary (Devlin) McDonough of Melrose, known also as “Mary Devlin” formerly of Stoneham, passed away on Sunday, March 31 at age 84. Born to Estelle Frazier of Medford, a homemaker and business manager and John Devlin, the owner of Stoneham Paint and Hardware and industrial/residential plumber. She was raised on a small subsistence farm on Hill St. in Stoneham with her sister Patricia (surviving), brothers Gene and Jack and extended family. Beloved mother of Meghan McDonough; she also leaves many loving nieces and nephews.
Estelle enjoyed learning, new experiences, skiing, the ocean, live music, theatre, baking and actively supported the educational goals of those around her. In her youth, she worked at her father’s hardware store, played field hockey, participated in clubs, made lifelong friends and graduated from Stoneham High, Class of 1957. Her passionate career in Public Health as a Nurse began at Simmons College, graduated 1961, followed by Boston University, MSN-Public Health Nursing Supervisor, 1969. She was inspired to follow her family in medicine by her nurse-aunt Anna Martha, medical administrator-aunt Sister Elizabeth Marie and uncle Dr. Thomas P. Devlin. 

She trained at Boston Lying In, Childrens Hospital and Mass General and went on to serve communities in Boston, Greater Boston, Merrimack Valley and the North Shore. She worked for Lawrence General as Director of Home Health, Medford VNA, Mass Department of Public Health as RN Director of Infectious Disease, also in Special Ed and in clinical research and program development. She helped to start the Urgent Care at Mass General Hospital and taught in the MGH School of Nursing.

Later in her career, Estelle spent 13 years with Stoneham Public Schools in School Nursing of which she was proud. She loved Stoneham. In her summers then, she worked on the North Shore with migrant fishing families. After retirement she continued to do community screenings with the Melanoma Foundation. She remained active with the Stoneham and Melrose Senior Centers and the Stoneham Community Educational Foundation.

In her working life, Estelle stood with her coworkers and the communities she served. She was an active member of the unions that represented her workplaces; she was part of the 1980s strike that granted historic wage increase for nurses at Boston City (now Boston Medical Center) and was a skilled negotiator in School Nursing contracts with Stoneham Public Schools. She achieved her dream of getting a Nurse in every school building for a real industry wage and saw the School Nurses elevated to a pay ladder. She was, most recently, a Union member of MTA Stoneham Educators Association and Mass Nurses Association.
Personable, dependable, a gifted listener and storyteller, a wonderful traveling companion, she approached strangers as friends she had yet to meet. Mary was grand, a woman of completely Irish descent and a devout Catholic who aimed to uplift all.

Estelle is the dear aunt of Sean, Patty, Kathy, Michele, Mark, Lynne, Peter and Kyle and great aunt to many including Tarryn, Teaghan, Katie, Becca, Elizabeth, Jenny, Jimmy and Sarah. 

Over the years, she was a parishioner of St. Joseph’s of Woburn, St. Mary’s of Melrose and St. Mary’s of Winchester.

Funeral from the Barile Family Funeral Home, 482 Main St., Rt. 28 in Stoneham on Saturday, April 13 at 10 a.m. followed by a funeral Mass celebrating Mary’s eternal life in St. Mary’s Church, 155 Washington St., Winchester at 11 a.m. Family and friends are cordially invited to gather and share memories with Mary’s family on Friday, April 12 from 4 to 7 p.m. in the funeral home. Parking attendants and elevator available. Interment Lindenwood Cemetery, Stoneham. In lieu of flowers, please consider making donations in Mary’s memory to the Devlin Medical Scholarship Fund, 34 Pleasant St., Stoneham, MA 02180. Arrangements by the Barile Family Funeral Home in Stoneham. For directions or to send a memorial condolence, visit barilefuneral.com or Facebook.com/BarileFamilyFuneralHome.