With last week being National Nurses Week, I thought Iâ€™d share a note that the late Dave Lepore sent to The Bristol Press after Sophie Jadowicz, a pediatric nurse at Bristol Hospital, died. Sophie had been with the hospital from 1957 to 1983, the year of her passing.
As many know, Dave, one of the most popular individuals in town during his last 15-20 years, had a lifelong battle with Cooleyâ€™s Anemia, an inherited blood disorder characterized by abnormal hemoglobin resulting in problems such as an enlarged heart, liver and spleen.
Dave, who passed away at age 41 in 2003, was about 22 when he wrote to The Bristol Press with this tribute:
â€śI am writing to pay tribute to a woman who recently passed away, Sophie Jadowicz. Sophie, a nurse in Bristol Hospitalâ€™s Pediatrics Ward for over 20 years, was a special friend of mine. Through my frequent visits to pediatrics, I got to know and love her. I feel sorry for that all the kids who in the future will stay in pediatrics, will not have Sophie as a nurse. I feel bad that the parents of these children will not have Sophie to explain things and offer reassurance.
â€śA nurse is more than being a member of the medical profession. A nurse personifies health and compassion. A nurse is at once strong and gentle, and Sophie was more than just a nurse. Sophie was a healer of body and spirit. She often made a tough situation easier. Her sense of humor and compatibility earned her respect and friendship.
â€śI have many special memories of Sophie, but one remains especially clear in my mind. She was a great fan of singer Tom Jones. I can picture her sitting on the edge of a bed in my hospital room relating with great animation a concert she had attended. As she told me how her friends arranged for her to meet Tom Jones backstage, her eyes lit up. This is how I will remember Sophie; smiling and laughing as she told a story.
â€śSophie had a rare gift of sharing happiness with others. I am fortunate that there were many times she shared it with me.â€ť
The Friday, May 11, 1984 edition of The Bristol Press had a photo that was taken by photographer Peter Maronn. The words accompanying the photo were:
â€śOil painting of Sophie Jadowicz, a nurse at Bristol Hospital from 1957 until her death last year, was presented to the Pediatric Unit by several other former associates in her memory. Commissioned from local artist William Finkenstein, the portrait was presented to Diane Carter, head nurse of pediatrics, by Calista Goodfield during National Nurse Recognition Day ceremonies May 7.â€ť
Sophie was born in New Britain and had been a Bristol resident for 18 years when she died at age 56. She resided at 174 Queen St., was a member of St. Josephâ€™s Church and had previously worked at Elmcrest Manor in Portland.
She was survived by a brother, Edward Dziadowicz, and sister, Jean Trocki, both of New Britain, as well as several nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews. She is buried in Sacred Heart Cemetery in New Britain. Â Â
Contact Bob Montgomery at email@example.com or by calling 860-973-1808.