July 6 2018

Obituary: Family Woman, Nurse, Citizen of the Year Bernadette "Bunny" Whittington, 88

A member of the Burlington community who dedicated much of her life to helping others has passed.

 

Bernadette “Bunny” Whittington, a devoted family woman and longtime volunteer for a number of Burlington organization, passed away on Saturday, June 30 at the age of 88.

 

Bernadette was born in Hampton, New York, when the town had a population of less than 1,000 residents. She attended Albany Medical Center where she earned a Nursing Degree. In 1961 her and her husband, Robert Whittington, moved to Burlington. Bernadette worked at Choate Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital as a medical/surgical nurse, and ended her 55 year nursing career at the VA Hospital in Bedford where she worked as a psychiatric nurse for 15 years. During her retirement years, she continued her nursing career volunteering as a Public Health Nurse for the Town of Burlington where she assisted in Flu Clinics, Diabetic clinics and other community events.

 

Bernadette was a member of Burlington’s Disability Access Commission and was an active participant in the Burlington senior center. She worked as a greeter and receptionist at the Burlington Town Hall up to the age of 83. She was a strong supporter of the Easter Seals, Knights of Columbus, and was a board member of the Burlington Council on Aging.

 

In 2012 she was honored as Burlington’s Outstanding Citizen of the Year.

 

Council on Aging Director Marge McDonald praised Bernadette’s work helping others and said she will be missed.

 

Bunny was at heart a caregiver,” McDonald said. “I knew her for 17 years and for the 15 years she was able to come to the senior center she was my eyes and ears. Alerting me to health issues of people who came to the center as she noticed them. She was a board member and volunteer, always showing how she cared about people and wanted the best for them. She is deeply missed by those who knew her and cared about her."

 

Read her full obituary from Sullivan Funeral Home below:


 

Bernadette “Bunny (Bethel) Whittington, a Nurse, Volunteer, Citizen of the Year, and a woman devoted to her family passed away from the effects of Alzheimer’s Disease on Saturday, June 30, 2018. She was 88 years old. Bunny was born in Hampton, NY. She was the daughter of Francis and Mary Quinn. Hampton had a population of less than 1000. She graduated from Granville High School in Granville, New York. She met her future husband Robert Whittington who lived on the other side of the Poultney River in Poultney, Vermont. Bunny did not let growing up in such a small town stop her from following her dreams. She went to Albany Medical Center where she earned her Nursing Degree. She married her husband Bob in May 1954 and they eventually settled in Burlington, MA in 1961. She worked at Choate Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital as a medical/surgical nurse, and ended her 55 year nursing career at the VA Hospital in Bedford, MA where she worked as a psychiatric nurse for 15 years. During her retirement years, she continued her nursing career volunteering as a Public Health Nurse for the Town of Burlington where she assisted in Flu Clinics, Diabetic clinics and other community events. As a nurse, she was an extremely strong advocate for her patients, their families, Veterans, and the handicap.

 

Bunny used her God given gifts to serve her family and community. She was a member of Burlington’s Disability Access Commission and Minuteman Home Services and was an active participant in the Burlington senior center. She even worked as a greeter and receptionist at the Burlington Town Hall up to the age of 83. She was a strong supporter of the Easter Seals, Knights of Columbus, and was a board member of the Burlington Council on Aging. She assisted her husband, Bob, in all his charitable organizations and activities as well. Not that she didn’t have enough on her plate, she enjoyed reading, knitting, crocheting, ceramics, working with stain glass, playing cards and any other activity that would keep her involved in her community. The residents of Burlington recognized her contributions to the community and honored her as their Outstanding Citizen of the Year in 2012. As a mother, she supported each child in their activities, sports, education, and life choices as well and was the person her family went to for guidance and advice.

 

Bunny was the beloved wife of the late Robert Whittington. She was the loving mother of Robert Whittington & his wife Sun Ok of Korea, Marybeth (Whittington) Rose & her husband George of Merrimack, NH, and Anne Whittington and her partner Charles Falzone of Lowell. She was the proud grandmother of Jason Mena of Burlington. She was the sister of Anne Heaney of Hampstead, NY, and the late Beverly West, Francis Bethel and Thomas Bethel.

 

Funeral from the Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home, 43 Winn Street, Burlington (exit 34 off Rt. 128/95, Woburn side) on Friday, July 6 at 9 a.m. Followed by a Mass of Christian Burial in St. Margaret’s Church, 111 Winn St., Burlington at 10 a.m. Visiting hours Thursday from 4-7 p.m. Interment in Pine Haven Cemetery, Burlington. Memorials in Bernadette’s name may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association of MA and NH, 309 Waverly Oaks Rd, Waltham, MA 02452 or www.alz.org/manh. For directions, obituary & online guestbook see www.stmargaretburlington.org or www.sullivanfuneralhome.net


 

 

 
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