Red Sox ‘Angel in the Dugout’ on display at TAMC

11 years ago

Red Sox ‘Angel in the Dugout’

on display at TAMC

    PRESQUE ISLE — A 100-year-old devout Red Sox fan from Presque Isle, whose milestone birthday wish in mid-September was to see her team go all the way, is being called by family and friends the “Angel in the Dugout” in last week’s World Series win.

Photo courtesy of TAMC

    FONDLY REMEMBERED — This photo, taken at the 100th birthday party of Doris Bernard at TAMC’s Women’s Health Center Sept. 16, shows Bernard holding up the Red Sox jersey given to her by staff at TAMC’s Women’s Health Center. With Bernard are Lucy Richard, left, TAMC women’s health practitioner and Glenda Capps, RN, right. Family members attending the party are sitting in the background. The gifted jersey photographed is among the items in the Red Sox “Angel in the Dugout” Display at TAMC’s Women’s Health Center through the end of November.


    Doris Bernard of Presque Isle, who had celebrated her 100th birthday — Red Sox-style — six weeks earlier, passed away Oct. 26, just four days before her beloved team won the World Series. The last time her Red Sox won it all at home was in 1918, when Doris turned 5-years-old.
    “She was there at Fenway last Wednesday, I’m certain of that. She was the ‘Angel in the Dugout,’” said Jane Towle, Bernard’s niece. “I think she wanted to be certain they’d win, so she personally intervened with a higher power! I could think of no greater way to celebrate Aunt Doris’ life than with the Red Sox going all the way.”
    The last several weeks of the centenarian’s life were marked with celebration. In addition to watching her Red Sox win the American League Championship and make it to the World Series, Bernard was feted with four birthday parties to mark her 100th year.
    One of those parties was thrown by staff at TAMC’s Women’s Health Center, who had provided medical care for her for over a decade.
    On Sept. 16, just two days after her official 100th birthday, she arrived at the health center for what she thought was a routine appointment, to cheers of surprise by family, friends, TAMC leaders, and city and state officials.
    So when Bernard passed away within days of the Red Sox World Series win, TAMC Women’s Health Practitioner Lucy Richard and her nurse, Glenda Capps, RN, who had just recently thrown a bash befitting that of a most revered resident of Red Sox Nation, wanted to pay tribute to a life well lived in a way Bernard would appreciate.
    “She so loved her Red Sox and her collection of Red Sox memorabilia,” said Richard. “It was all she talked about at the party we threw for her. She loved sharing stories and items from her collection with others, so it just made sense — with the Red Sox winning the World Series — for us to team up with her family and provide a place for the community to honor her legacy and share in one of her life’s greatest passions.”
    Throughout the month of November, that place will be the site of Doris Bernard’s fourth 100th birthday party — the waiting area of TAMC’s Women’s Health Center. The tastefully decorated space has been transformed into a mecca for Red Sox fans, with the memorabilia of arguably the greatest.
    Among the items in the Red Sox “Angel in the Dugout” Exhibit is the collection of items Bernard just recently received from the team in recognition of her 100th birthday. Included is a hand-written note and card, B Strong sticker, Sox sticker, pocket-sized 2013 schedule, autographed Jacoby Ellsbury card, and a sample of Fenway dirt. It is that last item Bernard told WAGM-TV Sports Director Rene Cloukey, in her final interview with him, that she would “not sell for a million dollars.”
    The exhibit also includes a number of items Bernard received when she visited Fenway Park to attend a Red Sox game in 2007 at the young age of 94. A couple of baseballs (one autographed), a Dustin Pedroia Lettermen Trading Card, and dozens of collectibles round out the display, which, by no means is exhaustive of the collection of items amassed by Bernard over several decades.
    “It makes perfect sense that we share some of the items she collected with the public at TAMC. After all, the TAMC Team worked with her to help keep her healthy and live well for an impressive 100 years,” said Towle. “We are glad that community members will get to share in a part of Aunt Doris’ life that meant so much to her, thanks to a team of outstanding medical professionals who helped care for her.”
    According to Towle, once the Red Sox “Angel in the Dugout” Exhibit is taken down at the end of November, family members will each receive some of the items, as Bernard had requested. But for the coming weeks, the public is invited to celebrate both the Red Sox World Series win, and the life of Doris Bernard, at TAMC’s Women’s Health Center.
    “Doris’ spirit was just unbelievable. As I said at her 100th birthday party, I think it’s the ultimate in health care when you see someone who lives to be 100 years old, has lived well, and did everything to keep herself healthy, achieve such a milestone. As providers we hope to achieve this every day with our patients,” said Richard. “We invite the community to visit the exhibit over the coming month and celebrate the incredible spirit of Doris Bernard.”
    The exhibit will be open to the public at TAMC’s Women’s Health Center in the Millennium Medical Office Building, located on the A.R. Gould Memorial Hospital campus on Academy Street in Presque Isle, weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. through Nov. 27. Posters directing visitors to the exhibit will be hung from the entrance of the Millennium building, hospital main entrance, and Pinkham entrance.
    The exhibit kicks off at the same time as the community-wide, TAMC-led “Pitch in for the Paws” collection drive for the Central Aroostook Humane Society in Presque Isle and Halfway Home Pet Rescue in Caribou. In honor of Bernard, who had requested contributions in her memory go, in part to, the Central Aroostook Humane Society, TAMC officials are encouraging those who visit the exhibit through Nov. 8, bring an item to place in the “Pitch in for the Paws” collection box located in the Women’s Health Center.