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Obituary: Shirley Bowles McLaughlin, R.N., 99

Sep 13, 2017 06:24AM ● By Bill Gilman

Shirley Bowles McLaughlin, R.N.

Dracut, MA - Shirley Bowles McLaughlin, R.N. who lived independently in Dracut, MA, but had lived in the Lowell, MA area, passed away on September 11, 2017 going home to rest in the arms of our Lord at the age of 99. 

She was born March 16, 1918 and was the daughter of the late Frank E., Lila Pugh Bowles and Ida Bowles (her stepmother) – all of Dracut. 

She lived a fantastic life being a Registered Nurse, a World War II Veteran, having served with the Harvard Medical Unit in the South Pacific area, which included Australia, New Guinea and the Dutch East Indies from 1942 until 1945. Shirley was a graduate of Lowell General Hospital School of Nursing in 1939 and was also at one time on the staff of the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital before the war. She also received a diploma from the Bradshaw School of Business in Lowell. In later years, she was an Occupational Health Nurse at General Electric as well as the Internal Revenue Service Center in Andover. In recent years, Shirley was associated with the Lowell Visiting Nurse Association. 

Shirley was known for being a political activist, was a Congressional Aide in the Lowell office of Congressmen Paul W. Cronin from 1973 through 1975. She was a delegate to the Massachusetts Presidential State Convention in 1978. Some of the organizations that Shirley was very active with over the years were the LGH Nurses Alumni, the Dracut VFW and the American Red Cross Nursing Alumni. She was also a client assisted by and supporter of the Lowell Association of the Blind and an avid supporter of the Merrimack Valley Vietnam Veterans. She was also a much beloved and active member of The Church of Christ in Chelmsford and the Collinsville Bible church in Dracut and attended services regularly. She truly had a kind word of everyone and a dear love for the Lord. 

Anyone who knew Shirley and had the opportunity to spend time talking with her, soon learned about her life’s wonderful adventures. It was truly an honor to know her and she will be dearly missed and remembered by many people. 

She is survived by her son, James Jesse McLaughlin and his wife, Dyanne, of Dracut, MA, her daughter Patricia Raymond of Salem, NH; granddaughter, Dr. Dawna McLaughlin - Parent and her husband, Dr. Daniel Parent, of Windham, NH; grandsons, Matthew P. Raymond and wife, Michelle, of East Hampton, CT, and Brad J. McLaughlin and his wife Jennifer, of Hudson, NH and seven great-grandchildren Nicole and Riley Parent, Joseph and Ayden Raymond and Kenley, Tylen and Jayde McLaughlin.

She was the sister of the late Charles D. Bowles of Tyngsboro, MA. 
She will also be missed dearly by her close friends Mary Harvey, Stu & Madeline Sheets and Elaine Kelley. 

Her family would like to thank the nurses and staff of The Blaire House of Tewksbury for their compassion and care over the last three months of Shirley’s life. 

ARRANGEMENTS: Relatives and friends are invited to pay their respects from 4 -8 p.m. on THURSDAY, September 14th at the DRACUT FUNERAL HOME 2159 Lakeview Ave., Dracut. Her Funeral Service will take place at the funeral home on FRIDAY at 10 a.m. with burial to follow in Oakland Cemetery, Dracut. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in her memory to the Lowell Association for Blind 169 Merrimack Street, Lowell, MA 01852. To leave an online condolence, story or message please visit or find us on Facebook under Dracut Funeral Home.

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