Remembering the Pine Belt: Frances Marie Ishee Duffy

My mother, Frances Marie Ishee Duffy passed away in October of 2013 after battling an array of illnesses for three months.  My mom was a registered nurse, mostly pediatrics, for thirty years.  She loved taking care of patients and was the first nurse to wear pants as part of her uniform when the hospital was still Jones County Community Hospital.  My mom first went to school to become a hair stylist, but decided her true passion was nursing.  She trained at Charity Hospital.  She loved the alumni association and served one term as president of the alumni association.

In a day and time when most women stayed home, she earned her nursing degree.  She managed to grow beautiful flowers, cook supper every night, and attend most the important events in our lives around her career.  She and my dad were a true team.  They met in Miami, Florida where she dared to venture after nursing school. My parents loved life.  They liked to eat out in retirement and to travel when they could do so. My mom loved her church, Franklin United Methodist.

Despite all of her accomplishments, her greatest ones were her three grandchildren.

My mother was still teaching us even in her death.  As she battled her illnesses in hospitals and nursing homes, we were reminded that the elderly are human beings who have a right to the best of medical care.  They should not have to have an advocate fighting for those rights.  When they asked to see a doctor, they deserve to see one.

Photograph taken circa 1956 on the roof of Charity Hospital.