Sister Beverly McEachin, formerly known as Sister Marie Neil McEachin, died on Friday, April 26, 2019, at the Dominican Life Center in Adrian, Michigan. She was 90 years of age and in the 72nd year of her religious profession in the Adrian Dominican Congregation.
Sister Beverly was born in Detroit to Neil and Mildred (Piche) McEachin. She graduated from St. Paul High School in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan, and received a bachelor’s degree in biology from Siena Heights College (University) in Adrian and a master’s degree in guidance from University of Detroit (Detroit-Mercy).
Sister spent 30 years ministering in elementary and secondary education and school counseling in Chicago, Elmhurst and Elgin, Illinois; Casa Grande, Arizona; and St. Clair, Paw Paw, Detroit, and Port Huron, Michigan. This includes 12 years at Dominican High School in Detroit, a sponsored institution of the Adrian Dominican Congregation. Sister Beverly was also financial director for 11 years at Samaritan Health Center in Detroit, and the Director of Annual Donations for the Adrian Dominican Sisters Development Office for four years.
Sister Beverly became a resident of the Dominican Life Center in Adrian, Michigan, in 2015. She was preceded in death by her parents and her sister, Gail, and a cousin, Sister Mary Helen Mack, OP, who was a member of the Congregation. She is survived by two sisters: Marilyn Helhowski of Mesa, Arizona, and Susan Nichols of Clinton Township, Michigan, and two brothers: Patrick McEachin of Connelly Springs, North Carolina, and Robert McEachin of Caseville, Michigan, and a cousin, Sister Evelyn Piche, OP, a member of the Adrian Dominican Congregation.
Welcome of Sister Beverly will be on Thursday, May 2, 2019, at 6:00 p.m. in the Dominican Life Center lobby; the Wake will follow from 6:15 to 7:00 p.m. in the Rose Room. The Reception of the Body and Vigil Prayer will be at 7:00 p.m. in St. Catherine Chapel. The Mass of Christian Burial will be offered in St. Catherine Chapel on Friday, May 3, 2019, at 10:30 a.m. Both the Vigil and the Mass of Christian Burial will be live streamed. The Rite of Committal will be in the Congregation cemetery.
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Anderson-Marry Funeral Home, Adrian.
Center: First Holy Communion; Right: Beverly and Robert
Right: Sister Beverly poses with her family, from left, her father and mother, Sister Beverly, Robert, Patrick, Marilyn, Susan, and Gail.
From left: Sister Marie Neil (Beverly) and Robert. From left, Sisters Karen Lietz, Beverly McEachin, and Ann Nicolae Kotwica
From left, Sisters Ann Nicolae Kotwica, Joan Weitz, and Beverly McEachin. Sister Beverly with a service dog, May 5, 2016
From left: Sister Beverly focuses on a project, June 25, 2008. From left, Sister Rita Noeker, music; Mary Quigley, office; Pam Riddel, science; and Sister Beverly McEachin, academic counselor
Members of the 2006 Diamond Jubilee Crowd are: back row, from left, Sisters Jean Fitzgerald, Laura Pesick, Ann Romayne Fallon, Joan Donovan, Edith Kathleen Zemke, Jean Librizzi, Georgina Luznicky, Beverly McEachin, Helen C. McDaniel; and Mildred Ann Huber; third row, from left, Sisters Anne Richard Baker, Mary L. Russell, Anne Bernadette Stein, Joyce Rybarczyk, Patricia Cecile Slattery, Denise Walsh, Elizabeth Francis Tekaucic, Sheila N. Flynn, Jeri Renner, and Winifred C.M. Lynch; second row, from left, Sisters Anne Patrice Remkus, Therese Groulx, and Jean Irene McAllister; and front row, from left, Sisters Barbara Wetterer, Marie Therese Guigar, Virginia Therese Conway, Jean Anthony Sporer, and Michele Gebhardt.
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Sister Ellen Murphy, formerly known as Sister Marie Aquino Murphy, died on Thursday, April 11, 2019, at the Dominican Life Center in Adrian, Michigan. She was 82 years of age and in the 64th year of her religious profession in the Adrian Dominican Congregation.
Sister Ellen was born in Detroit to Joseph and Cecilia (Kenney) Murphy. She graduated from Dominican High School in Detroit and received a bachelor’s degree in history from Siena Heights College (University) in Adrian and a master’s degree in European history from De Paul University in Chicago.
Sister spent 35½ years ministering in elementary education in Detroit, Michigan; Chicago, Homewood, Elmhurst, Wilmette, and Oak Lawn, Illinois; and Fort Wayne, Indiana. This includes seven years as principal of Queen of Angels, Chicago; three years as principal of St. Joseph, Wilmette; and nine years as principal of St. Catherine of Alexandria, Oak Lawn, all in Illinois. She also spent five years as principal of St. Vincent de Paul in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Sister Ellen was the administrative assistant for a short time for the Dominican Midwest Chapter of the Adrian Dominican Sisters in Burbank; ministered in spiritual development for CenterPointe in South Holland for three years; was program coordinator for Women’s Center Project, Westchester for one year, all in Illinois. She was also regional coordinator for Catholic Association of Student Councils at Notre Dame, Indiana, for one year.
Sister Ellen became a resident of the Dominican Life Center in Adrian in 2013. She was preceded in death by her parents and a first cousin, Sister Celine Therese McMahon, OP, also an Adrian Dominican Sister. She is survived by her Adrian Dominican Sisters.
Welcome of Sister Ellen will be on Tuesday, April 16, 2019, at 6:00 p.m. in the Dominican Life Center lobby; the Wake will follow from 6:15 to 7:00 p.m. in the Rose Room. The Reception of the Body and Vigil Prayer will be at 7:00 p.m. in St. Catherine Chapel. The Mass of Christian Burial will be offered in St. Catherine Chapel on Wednesday, April 17, 2019, at 10:30 a.m. Both the Vigil Prayer and the Funeral will be live streamed. The Rite of Committal will be in the Congregation cemetery.
Left: Sister Ellen Murphy with her parents
From left: Sisters Joyce Rybarczyk, left, and Ellen Murphy in Watervliet, Michigan, where Sister Joyce ministered on a reservation. Staff members of St. Catherine of Alexandria School and Parish, Oak Lawn, Illinois are, from left, Sisters Helen Sorich and Ellen Murphy; Father Mark Walter; Father Joseph O’Brien, Pastor; Byrnie Smierciak, Director of Religious Education; and Sister Kathleen Harkins.
Sisters Patricia Walter (left) and Ellen Murphy stand in front of CenterPointe Women’s Center. Sisters Norlee McDonnell (left) and Ellen Murphy
From left: Members of the Sophia Mission Group celebrate Christmas, early 2000s. Shown are, standing, from left, Sisters Ellen Murphy, Peter Anthony Schulte, and Mary Alice Hoff and seated, from left, Sisters Jean Keeley, Sally Fergus, and Juliann Flynn. Standing in the Dominican Midwest Chapter Office are, from left, Sisters Louise Borgacz, Helen Therese Mayer, and Ellen Murphy.
Chatting in the Dominican Life Center lobby, from left, are: Sisters Mary Singer, Mary Ellen Youngblood, Theresa McCall, Joan Sustersic, Peter Anthony Schulte, and Ellen Murphy.
Members of the 2004 Golden Jubilee June Crowd are: back row, from left, Sisters Marianne O’Neill, Ellen Murphy, Marlene Ptaszynski, Marilyn Francoeur, Clarice Moyle, Esther Kennedy, Margaret Andrezik, Rose Ann Schlitt, Jeanne Marie Stickling, Gail Himrod, and Norlee McDonnell and front row, from left, Sisters Evelyn Piche, Teresita Ruiz, Mary Ann Letzgus, Ellen Schmitz, Therese Reynolds, Rose Irene Calvert, Joan Baustian, Kathleen Watt, Virginia Kleckner, and Janet Capone (Prioress).
The small city of Tucumcari, New Mexico, on the eastern side of the state not far from the Texas border, was home to St. Anne’s Parish School, staffed by Adrian Dominican Sisters – and to the Szabo family.
Louis Szabo and Florence Murphy – he of Hungarian descent and born in Alma, Texas, she of Irish extraction and from Clarksdale, Illinois – met in 1927, some years after both families had moved to New Mexico. Florence was a schoolteacher in Miera, New Mexico, when she decided to join a club for Catholic singles, and she and Louis were matched up as pen pals. Three years later, the couple married and settled in Tucumcari.
Louis was a machinist for the Rock Island-Southern Pacific Railroad as well as a farmer. He never finished high school, but he had taught himself how to repair locomotives, how to farm, and how to do electrical and plumbing work. “My dad was a silent, hard-working man who loved nature, had a thirst and respect for knowledge and was known all over this area for his helpfulness, honesty and generosity,” wrote his daughter Eleanora, the future Sister Ann Rozalia, in a July 28, 1980, St. Catherine letter.
Born on August 12, 1932, Eleanora Isobel Szabo was actually the second of twin daughters, but little Rozalia Ann died just five hours after her birth. Delivery took place at home, since the town had no hospital then, so when Florence developed severe complications Louis arranged for her, his sister Mary, and Eleanora to travel by train to Oklahoma City and a hospital there. One of the family’s goats, Bee-bee, also made the trip in a crate Louis made for her, in order to provide milk because Florence was unable to nurse her baby; but as it turned out, Bee-bee was so stressed by the travel that she quit giving milk and “I was a Carnation baby after that,” Sister Ann Rozalia wrote in her autobiography.
Read more about Sister Ann Rozalia (pdf)
Memorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221.
Lisbeth Gene Hentschel was born on October 5, 1960 to Eugene and Meg (Malcolm) Hentschel in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She became part of a family of six, with her siblings, James, Stephan, and Mary.
Lisbeth’s childhood life was very busy: traveling, camping, going to the beach, and playing outside. She learned to read at age 3 and once she arrived at kindergarten, a lifelong love of learning began.
Lissie attended Holy Name School and then Grand Rapids Catholic Central, graduating as salutatorian and a National Merit scholarship recipient. At Aquinas College, she majored in mathematics, accounting, and business, passing the CPA exam on her first try, at age 21. She was also a tutor at Aquinas and worked on the school newspaper, where she formed very close friendships. Her interest in art history drew her to Florence and Rome to see the art.
Lissie discovered that she was much more comfortable working with not-for-profit organizations. She worked for the Diocese of Grand Rapids and eventually became Financial Director at Family Outreach of Grand Rapids, which provides psychological services to the marginalized. She sought funding for the center, managed the accounting, and wrote grants. Lissie had a great call to social justice and frequently spoke out against the injustices in her city.
Lisbeth married Dale Johnson in August 1990 and their son, Nicholas Andrew Johnson, was born the following year. Family life, her job, and parish life kept her very busy. The Twelve Steps program was very important to her and she actively participated in Al-Anon. Although she knew that her marriage was not healthy, she remained married to care for her husband Dale, who had a lot of health issues. Once Dale was stable, they divorced, but Lissie continued to look after him and his medical needs.
Because she was the one sibling who remained in Grand Rapids, Lissie often had to care for her parents. With the death of first her mother and then beloved father in April 2018, she found herself in a time of new beginnings. Lissie and Joe Steve, a college friend, found each other and became engaged in the fall of 2018. Their wedding was to be in June 2019.
Lissie certainly considered herself to be a Dominican. She joined Associate Life in 2014 with her sister Mary Lach, Director of Associate Life, as her mentor. Both sisters enjoyed the hours they spent studying the formation materials. Lissie also attended Associate retreats and Partners gatherings.
Lissie enjoyed reading, quilting, watching old movies, swimming, and being with her son Nick and her many nieces and nephews.
In October, 2018 Lissie was diagnosed with uterine and lung cancer. She endured two difficult surgeries and in January 2019 began to take chemo treatments. Throughout this challenging time, she remained upbeat, happy, and positive. It was a tragic day for her family when, on March 29 on her way to work, she was involved in an auto accident, hit by an impaired driver. She lived five days despite being terribly injured.
On Wednesday, April 3, Lissie indicated in writing that she wished for her ventilator to be removed and to die peacefully. She wrote that her dad was telling her to “come home.” She died peacefully, with a smile on her face, talking to her dad.
Lissie’s Memorial Mass was celebrated on April 12, at Holy Spirit Parish with her good friend Msgr. Edward A. Hankiewicz presiding. She will be missed. Lissie is the fourth person of the staff of the college newspaper to die at an early age. Perhaps they are gathering together, arguing and laughing as in the days gone by.
Our Adrian Dominican cemetery with its circular headstones is a beautiful place of rest for women who gave their lives in service to God—and a peaceful place for contemplation and remembrance.
We will post memorial reflections on our faithfully departed Sisters and Associates. If you would like to reflect on a Sister or Associate who has gone before us, please send your reflections – no more than 500 to 600 words – to
Sister Barb Kelley (email@example.com).
We invite you to meet some of the wonderful women who have recently crossed into eternity.