Irene Mary (Grabowitz) Carlon, 86, lifelong resident of Suffield, passed away peacefully on April 26, 2020. Born on September 16, 1933 in Springfield Mass she was the daughter of the late Powel (Paul) and Frances (Golon) Grabowitz of Poland. She grew up in Suffield with her parents and 6 siblings on a farm now known as Bradly Airport, she graduated from Suffield Schools in 1951 and went on to earned her nursing degree at New Britain General Hospital in 1955.
After a courageous battle recovering from her house fire 4 months ago our sweet angel passed on into God’s blessed hand. She has earned her well-deserved wings. She fought long and hard until God decided he wanted her back home with Him. She passed with grace and dignity with His grace and guidance to everlasting brightness. Our mom’s strength to fight and live would not have been possible without the love, dedication and gentle care that her beloved son, Richard Carlon, gave over the years. Rich willingly watched over his mom’s well-being with unwavering compassion. Rich was an Advocate for his mom, Honoring her wishes till the end. They were mother and son but more importantly they became best friends.
Irene retired over 20 years ago but during her dedication as a nurse she was most recently employed with the State of Connecticut: Department of Corrections as a Nurse at the MacDougall-Walker and Osborn Correctional Institutions. Over her life she had many proud accomplishments starting with working at the young age of 16 at Shade Tobacco. After obtaining her nursing degree she found her passion helping others and in many roles; as a nurse anesthetist at NBGH, Newington Children’s Hospital, ADRC, Blue Ridge A.D helping patients overcome their additions, Norwich State Hospital, Convalescent homes in Windsor, Ct and as a Private Duty nurse. She also found time to help as a school nurse and working with teenagers at local camps, camp PO Jamaica.
Irene loved being an artist, creating many paintings after retirement, even having one featured in the JI. She was proud to be a flight attendant in her early years and took that love to take flying lessons in California. She loved to travel with family and friends which took her too many places including Japan, Singapore, Alaska, the Caribbean, Mexico just to name a few. While in Mexico she even took the time to teach local children the English language. The love of music stood out as she learned to play the organ, danced at local events and The Gallery in Glastonbury with her friends, notably Brian Sherman. She was also a bit of the competitor as she enjoyed a good game of cards with family and at community gatherings and attending the races at local tracks like Riverside Park Speedway. Her passion of gardening, crafting and decorating was well known by anyone that visited or drove by her home. The Christmas season was her favorite holiday. She loved the gift of giving and couldn’t wait to start collecting Christmas gifts early in the year. Christmas gifts still remain that she gathered in preparation for the holiday before the fire. Most of all she had a strong devotion to giving back and was actively involved in charities, especially St. Jude. Everyone that was lucky enough to meet her became a friend, in particular Maryann Skala and Charlotte Sorrow. As some of her friends reminisced recently they shared these thoughts; “she loved people and life and it showed through her compassion and unselfishness” “She would randomly give gifts and tokens of appreciation to anyone she met” “She was the most generous, compassionate person we knew” “Irene’s Character, unique gifts and talents touched many lives” “Her Strong will, stubbornness and keen sense of sarcasm gave her the will to live life to the fullest and fight to the end” “Irene’s love, sense of humor and smile for others was utterly undeniable, she had a well lived life”
Irene is survived by her three children, daughter Patricia Carlon Gneiting of Newington and sons Richard Carlon of Suffield, and Herb Carlon; There was nothing Irene wouldn’t do for her family, however, her greatest joy came from her grandchildren, she cherished, Erica Gneiting, Cody Gneiting, and Emily Jackson, along with her two very special, beloved, great-grandchildren Camden and Everett Jackson. She was predeceased by her former husband Herbert J. Carlon, Sr.; her brothers William, Henry, Steven and Edmond Grabowitz, and Sisters Peg Rohrbacher and Pauline Nofal, all of whom she loved dearly.
The family would like to thank the staff at Hartford Hospital ICU/PACU for their wonderful care and compassion for our mother during this difficult time. And a very heartfelt gratitude to “the crew” of Suffield Ambulance, Suffield Fire/Police, especially “Officer Justin Nelson”. Who was the first on the scene of the fire, scooped our mom up and got her of danger.
Memorial donations will gratefully be accepted in her name to the following charities: Suffield Community Aid (formerly known as Emergency Aid Association) 450 South Street Suffield, Ct 06078-2210 www.suffieldcommunityaid.org or St. Jude Children’s Hospital: 501 St. Jude Place
Memphis, TN 38105 www.StJude.org
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic A Memorial Mass and Celebration of Irene’s Life will be held when we are all able to gather together safely and will be announced. In the meantime we have a ribbon around the tree at her house with photos and would gladly accept any notes of condolences in the box we prepared tree side or a “beeping” of your horn as you drive by in mom’s memory. Irene will be honored and inducted to The Nightingale Tribute for her years of service as a dedicated nurse by her nurse colleague, Russel Schuetz of E. Windsor. Arrangements are under the direction of Heritage Funeral Home, 1240 Mountain Road, Suffield CT. To view Irene’s Memorial page or to leave an online condolence, please visit www.SuffieldFuneralHome.com