Doris Jean Fishburn

Doris Jean Fishburn

Doris Jean (McMurtrie) Fishburn passed away peacefully August 9, 2019, at the age of 90. She was surrounded by her loving family. Jean was a resident of Worcester Township for more than 59 years, and Arbour Square in Harleysville for the last 5 years. She was a member of the Calvary Baptist Church in Norristown. Born in Williamsport, PA on August 19, 1928, she was the daughter of the late Albert C. and Miriam E. (Heintel) McMurtrie. Jean did her nurse’s training at Harrisburg Hospital and received her BSN at Eastern College. Nursing afforded her a wonderful career doing something she always loved. The last 25 years of her career were as a school nurse with the Methacton School District. Jean is survived by her loving family including two sons, William Scott (Joanne) of Worcester, PA and David Alan (Shirley) of Redmond, WA: a daughter, Diana L. (Gary) Kernop of Harleysville and two granddaughters, Jenna Joy and Samantha Jordon. She was preceded in death by her sister, Norma Louise Christian. Services were private. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to a local Salvation Army site, UNITE FOR HER, or a charity of your choosing. Please check the Bacchi website at www.bacchifh.com Jean McMurtrie Fishburn August 19, 2018 ~ 90th Birthday Celebration, Revised Jeannie was born on August 19, 1928, in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Her parents were Miriam and Albert McMurtrie. Norma Louise McMurtrie Christian was her beloved older sister. Jean lost her father at a very young age, and Clarence Eiswert was a wonderful stepfather to the girls. She was a child of the Great Depression and World War II. Education memories from Curtain Junior High School and Williamsport High School were important to Jean. She spoke about walking to junior high despite the weather. The snow was deep in those days! She spoke fondly of being in chorus, the church choir, and many sports. She was one of a few who qualified at the end of her senior year for participation in four years of sports in each season, and proudly still has the varsity letter she earned. Arbour Square in Harleysville is where she and longtime friend Bob Brandt shared an apartment. They enjoyed many friendships and activities while living there. Nursing was one of Jean’s lifelong passions. She always knew she wanted to be a nurse. She enjoyed hospital nursing at Harrisburg, Sacred Heart, and the Heart Hospitals. She found State Hospital to be very different between working there in the early 1950’s and then in again in 1970 with the drug and alcohol unit. Jean enjoyed nursing in a preschool when David was young, and met the challenges with handicapped youth at the Ken Crest Center before a long career with the Methacton School District as a school nurse. Jeannie would have told you she loved it all. A highlight of her career was meeting Jonas Salk at Ursinus College and getting his autograph Married to Harvey W. Fishburn, Jr. on September 16, 1950 in Harrisburg, she came to Norristown and made it her home. Three children completed their family – Diana, Scott, and David. With two toddlers in tow, one of whom had been a preemie, they built the homestead at 3221 Mill Road in 1956. The family was blessed to have both sets of grandparents – Nana and Pop-Pop Fishburn, and Grandma and Grandpa Eiswert – living locally and in their lives for many years. Jean continued two of her passions: nursing and music. A wonderful and important experience was her singing with the choral group The Village Singers. Couples’ Club dates back to 1950’s and has held many wonderful memories for Jeannie, as she talked about the camping trips, playing cards, and sharing monthly dinners together. Williamsburg trips brought a smile as did the Cotillion Dances. What a gift these lifelong friendships proved to be. She shared treasured time with Nancy Campbell, Dottie Schonely, as well as, Phil and Phyllis Trump. Methacton School District is where she spent most of her career as a school nurse, with time spent at the Methacton High School, Worcester, Eagleville, Woodland, and Arrowhead. She touched the lives of many students over the years, as well as, the many staff she worked with. She felt blessed to have remained friends with the retired nurses, and enjoyed seeing them for breakfast or special gatherings at Bobbi Smith’s home. She valued time shared with Bobbi, Nancy, Robin, Rae, Dot, Cheryl, and Jackie. Ultimately, Jeannie would have said that her children were her greatest gift. She was proud of the them and loved them dearly. Diana became a teacher with the Methacton School District and is recently retired. She lives in the Harleysville area with her husband Gary. Attending Mississippi State, Scott pursued horticulture, and created much of the beauty Jean loved on Mill Road. He and his family, Joanne and daughter Samantha, now live there. David attended Villanova and served in the United States Marine Corps. His love of the Pacific Northwest kept him there, as he worked for Boeing and then established his own business in Redmond, Washington. He and his family, Shirley and daughter Jenna, plan and make roots in the Southwest where it is sunny in retirement. Religion and her faith were a strong part of Jean’s life, from her roots in the Lutheran Church growing up and singing in its choir, to her memories as a member of Calvary Baptist Church in Norristown. She and Bob enjoyed the Sunday services at Arbour Square. Travel was something that Jean had always enjoyed, from the trips to the cottage in Ontario, Canada, to travels with David and Shirley in Hawaii. She enjoyed time with family and friends in Florida, as well as, Williamsburg, Las Vegas, and California. Jean enjoyed traveling south down Route 81 to Tuscaloosa with Gary and Diana. Several trips to the Pacific Northwest to visit David, Shirley, Diana, Gary, and John and Susan created wonderful memories, and she often said she could have lived there. A good sport – she also drove cross country with Diana and Scott. Trips into New England, Georgia, and Florida with Bob brought a smile in recent years. Reading was a lifelong passion of Jeannie’s. She loved mysteries by Dick Francis, Margaret Truman, and Mary Higgins Clark. She read daily, and enjoyed doing her crossword puzzles. At Arbour Square, she and Bob were often seen working on jigsaw puzzles. I n-laws have been good to Jeannie, and she viewed them as her own. She loved each of them and their special gifts. Gary is from Alabama, and is retired from the United States Marine Corps. Living in Pennsylvania, he established a Chimney Business. Often he grills for the family on the weekend. Joanne grew up in the area and went to Villanova like David. She has spent her career working for the Phillies organization. She loves horseback riding and trips to Canada. Shirley is from Guam, and after her education she went to work with the FAA. After a long and busy career with the FAA, she retired last year. She enjoys her family and travel. Holidays always brought a smile to Jeannie’s face. The magic of the Christmas season was always her favorite time of year. Education was important to Jean. She valued her nurse’s training at Harrisburg Hospital, and the friendships she made there. Often she would speak of her good friend Marie who had kept their class members in touch with each other. Later, she went on to Montgomery County Community and Eastern Colleges, where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in School Nursing. Jeannie was quite proud of accomplishing this in her forties. She attained her Master’s Degree as well. She valued her nursing license, and only recently decided not to renew it. Like her High School letter, her cap and nursing pin were treasured. Family was always important to Jean, whether it be her memories of her mother, sister, and stepfather as she grew to adulthood, or extended family such as aunts, uncles, and cousins that made family times a memory that she cherished through the years. She sought to keep the ties throughout her life. Marian and Harvey Fishburn, as well as, young Johnnie, became family to her when she married. She enjoyed visits with Elizabeth Marino as Elizabeth traveled back to her Pennsylvania roots. Jeannie enjoyed being a wife, parent, aunt, great-aunt, and grandmother. Interesting are two of Jeannie’s very special, late-in-life gifts. These are her two precious granddaughters – Jenna and Samantha. Jenna is David and Shirley’s daughter. She is eighteen and will start college in the fall. Like Jeannie, she is athletic. She enjoys sports, art, and music, and is very active with her church community. Samantha is fourteen and going into high school. She has enjoyed dance, art classes, and gymnastics. Sam loves cats. Sisters Norma and Jean were quite close. They both knew that they wanted to be nurses, and trained at Harrisburg Hospital. They liked the area, and both started their nursing careers there. Their story continued together: Imagine going out on a double date one evening, and both getting engaged in the same car that night. The guys had a signal to let each other know after the question was asked, so the excitement could be shared. The fun did not stop there -- three months later, both couples married in a double wedding in Harrisburg. Calls between Jean and Norma were frequent, and they enjoyed visits between Collegeville and Cincinnati. Home is where Jean’s heart was, whether it was the early days in the Center Square apartment or the home she helped build at Mill Road. She could proudly say that she built and helped maintain many of the stone walls. She always loved the home, and took pleasure driving there for a visit or through the Worcester countryside. Bob Brandt was Jean’s longtime companion. They shared memories and friends dating back to 1950 and Couples’ Club. They had a good life together. Ultimately, Jeannie left her mark on her family, friends, and coworkers. She was fair minded, friendly, kind, caring, and compassionate. She was never judgmental nor spoke ill of anyone. She is respected and remembered by many. Quite a gift to be sure! Retirement was something Jeannie enjoyed since she was 67 years of age in 1995. She enjoyed her home and traveled. She remained connected with friends and family and faced the challenge of breast cancer in 1996. She had been cancer free since her surgery and treatment until new tumors were discovered near the time of her death. Never looking back, Jeannie always said “she had had a good long life.” She would not have lived at a different time nor changed all that she has experienced. She was thankful and appreciative. While people look at the glass as half empty or half full, Jeannie saw her glass as one that was full. For all who have been part of her wonderful life, We thank you for sharing in her 90 remarkable years.
August 19, 1928 - August 9, 201908/19/192808/09/2019
Recommend Doris's obituary to your friends.

Share Obituary:

Share a memory

Add to your memory
Photos/Video
Candle
Mementos

Obituary

Doris Jean (McMurtrie) Fishburn passed away peacefully August 9, 2019, at the age of 90. She was surrounded by her loving family.Jean was a resident of Worcester Township for more than 59 years, and Arbour Square in Harleysville for the last 5 years. She was a member of the Calvary Baptist Church in Norristown.Born in Williamsport, PA on August 19, 1928, she was the daughter of the late Albert C. and Miriam E. (Heintel) McMurtrie. Jean did her nurse’s training at Harrisburg Hospital and ...

Read more

Events

There are no events scheduled. You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or plant a tree in memory of Doris Jean Fishburn.

Visit the Tribute Store