PLAINVILLE - Irene B. Vandal, 99, of Sunset Acres, passed away on April 24, 2020 after a 6-month period of failing health, at Madonna Manor, surrounded by her devoted family. A lifelong Democrat and voter, she was born on June 12, 1920, the day women got the right to vote in the United States. She was scheduled to meet her idol Hilary Clinton on April 4th, at An Unlikely Story but was unable to due to coronavirus precautions…she eagerly awaited the new scheduled date!
She was the daughter of the late George Sr. and Angeline (Chretien) Vandal and born in North Attleboro. Irene was a 1937 graduate of North Attleboro High School. A maverick in her time, returning to school at the age of 28, she was in the second graduating class at the Pondville Hospital School of Licensed Practical Nursing in Norfolk. She was employed at Pondville in the Outpatient Department and the Operating Room, where she remained until her retirement. Irene loved nursing and enjoyed working with the cancer patients that Pondville specialized in caring for. She began the legacy of Vandal nurses that continues in her nieces.
After her retirement, Irene bought a riverfront house in Canada and spent over 10 years in the summer with her French cousins. These were happy years as she enjoyed cooking dinners for them and getting to know her French background.
Irene enjoyed many happy times at the family summer homes on Hamilton Beach in Wareham, MA cooking her specialty clam chowder for the holiday cookouts. She was a talented gardener, an avid reader, and a phenomenal baker with Apple and blueberry pies and raspberry squares among her specialties. She loved to shop and was a total Maxxinista. She was also a huge fan of the NFL’s Ben Roethlisberger and Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors.
Irene is survived by her family that adored her: brother Robert “Bobby” Vandal, Sr and his companion Irene Tyler of North Attleboro; 4 nieces: Donna and her husband Kevin Dunn of North Attleboro; Debbie Clark of Rosharon, TX; Lynda and her husband George Juskiewicz of Plainville, and Barbara Junkins of Medway. She is also survived by her great nieces and nephews: Maggie Dunn of Tallahassee,FL; JJ Dunn of Pittsburgh, PA; Molly Dunn of N. Attleboro; Gabrielle, Liam and Kiera Clark all of Texas; Rick and David Lambert of N. Attleboro; and Lisa and her husband Robert Putman of Corning, NY.
She was predeceased by her parents, brothers George and Albert “Pete”, sisters Eva and Blanche (who died in the Spanish flu pandemic in 1919), sisters in law Frances and MaryLou, nephew Robert Vandal Jr. and her feline companion of 20 years, Rosie.
Irene’s family wishes to give special thanks to her neighbors Betty and Bruce Barton for their constant and unwavering support, enabling Irene to remain in her home for as long as she did. They would also like to thank the staff at Madonna Manor, especially Sue Wanamaker and Diane Bouthilette in the Activities Dept and nurses Christine, Nyesa and Mark and fellow French speaking CNA Nichelle.
She was a lifelong parishioner of Sacred Heart Parish in North Attleboro. A memorial will take place later this year due to the current restrictions of COVID19 virus.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Madonna Manor Activities Department, 85 N. Washington St, North Attleboro MA 02760.