Obituaries 06-06-2024

Mary Frances Russell

One of the Original Professors at Bunker Hill Community College

Mary Frances Russell, formerly of Easthampton, Charlestown and West Concord, died April 4, 2024, at Benchmark Senior Living at Waltham Crossings, Waltham, Massachusetts. She was 90 years old.

Mary was born in Easthampton, the daughter of Sydney, Sr., and Frances (Jaskulski) Russell. She graduated from Easthampton High School and received both a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts from University of Massachusetts – Amherst. After receiving her teaching certificate, she taught high school English in New York, Florida, and Massachusetts. Later, she joined the English department at Framingham State.

Mary was one of the original professors at Bunker Hill Community College in Charlestown. She enjoyed the diversity of its students and made many friends on the faculty. She loved books and was an avid reader and thinker. Mary retired to West Concord and spent many hours in the Lexington Library. Mary was introspective and known for her fierce independence. She embraced both her Yankee American and Polish ancestries. She would often regale others with stories of her childhood in Easthampton, Russell’s Drugs on Cottage Street, and life with her extended family. She grew up surrounded by many beloved aunts and uncles, particularly Aunt Lottie and Aunt Shirley, each of whom she so fondly remembered.

Mary’s many interests included gardening, music, politics, the beach and swimming, scripture, and the Red Sox. She was an avid investor and kept volumes of prodigious notes. She was a traveler and by her later years had visited nearly every town of note in New England yet had a soft spot for London, England.

Mary was predeceased in 2021 by her brother, Sydney W. Russell, Jr. of Vermont. She is survived by her nephews, Andrew W. Russell of New Jersey, Todd C. Russell of Connecticut and Eric J. Russell of Vermont.

Her burial will be at Brookside Cemetery in Easthampton on June 28th at 11:30 a.m. Arrangements have been made through the Mitchell Funeral Home.

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