Published 5:32 pm Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Born May 14, 1931, in New York, N.Y., the child of Mary Prestop and John Brostek, she was proud of her Russian/Polish heritage. After growing up in New York, N.Y., she graduated from the College of Mount Saint Vincent with a bachelor of science degree in nursing. She practiced nursing and taught at St. Vincent&squo;s Hospital in New York, N.Y. She also practiced nursing at Beth Israel Medical Center, where she was instrumental in organizing their cancer detection program.
One of the happiest periods of her life was the short time during which she was a novice at the Closed Order Convent of the Cenacles. She was a teacher for women&squo;s retreats in what was otherwise a silent convent. A back injury closed that chapter in her life.
On May 2, 1964, she married John Francis O&squo;Connor, who predeceased her in 2004. They resided on Staten Island until his retirement from the NYC Police force.&bsp; They moved to Syracuse, N.Y., where John was chief of police. In the late 70s, the O&squo;Connors retired to Lake Lanier, S.C.
Mrs. O&squo;Connor, affectionately known to many as &squo;Nonie,&dquo; made an indelible mark on the community with her wit and many acts of kindness. She was an active member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, where she was on the Ladies&squo; Altar Guild, helping for many years with fundraisers, and as one of the chief &squo;cooks and bottle washers&squo; for dinners and Sunday coffees. She started the first children&squo;s choir for what is now the 8:30 mass. She has been a longtime volunteer for the St. Luke&squo;s Ladies Auxiliary where she worked in the thrift shop. She was also active with American Indian Missions.
Mrs. O&squo;Connor is survived by her step-son, Kevin, his daughter Katherine, a sister, Patricia B. Sherwood, brother-in-law, Owen W. Webster, nieces: Ellen, Anne, Kate, and Ellissa, nephews: John, Jim, Greg, and Doug, a dear cousin, Doris, and seven godchildren.&bsp; She was predeceased by her sister, Lillian B. Webster.
While spending the last nine months of her life at White Oak Manor and Benson Hall, in Tryon, Mrs. O&squo;Connor&squo;s life was blessed by the excellent and compassionate care of all who served her there. She will be missed by all her friends and family with whom she shared her wonderful laughter and joy.
A funeral mass will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2008, at
11 a.m., with Father Patrick J. Winslow officiating. All are invited to a luncheon immediately following the service in the social hall of the church.
Petty Funeral Home and Crematory of Landrum is in charge of arrangements.
‐ paid obituary