Obituary for Claire Marie Putman (Nary)
Claire Marie (Nary) Putman, 80, of Ballou Lane, Williamstown, MA, passed away peacefully at her home on Saturday May 27, 2017 after a courageous battle with ovarian cancer. Born on November 24, 1936, she was the daughter of the late John J. and Ella F. (St. Cyr) Nary of North Adams. As a child, she attended and graduated from the former St. Joseph’s School in 1954. She went on to study at St. Luke’s Hospital School of Nursing in Pittsfield, MA, and became a Registered Nurse in 1957. She and her classmates, who stayed close friends and planned reunions together, learned their trade under the watchful eyes of strict nuns. Although there wasn’t a piece of jewelry Claire didn’t like, her St. Luke’s class pin was one of her most cherished possessions, and became a showpiece on the collar of her always-ironed traditional white uniform. She was a nurse for more than 55 years, first in Northampton and then locally. She will be remembered by the literally thousands of area patients she helped nurse back to health. Most of her career – 42 years - was spent working at the Williamstown Medical Associates where she was well known and respected by the doctors, nurses and patients. She retired from nursing in 2012 at the age of 75. When family members became ill like her loving mother, Ella, and former in-laws, Helen and Henry, they looked no further than Claire for her caring support. As a patient at Berkshire Medical Center just before her passing, the young RNs would ask her for tips on how to manage nurse’s training. She eagerly shared her experiences with them, and was so grateful for the excellent care she received there and at the cancer infusion center across town.
While nursing was her life, Claire’s true pride and joy where her three boys. As a lifelong professional, her dream was for her boys to go to college and succeed … and so they did. She and her mother were a unique parenting tandem for their time, raising the boys together. In 1975 she got remarried and later moved from North Adams to Williamstown. Claire and her husband Roger enjoyed square dancing, card games, and raising their two Yorkshire terriers, Muffy and Mindy, who doubled as the grandchildren. Last November they celebrated their 41st wedding anniversary. A Transcript newspaper model in the 1970’s, Claire loved wearing nice clothing when not restricted to her nursing cap and uniform. But her passion in life was cleaning, and she was an expert at it. An immaculate home meant everything to her so a good dust mop was never far from hand. In her later years, Claire was an avid QVC shopper, enjoyed relaxing on her sun porch, “Facetiming” with her only sibling, her beloved sister Shirley, and playing Candy Crush on her iPad. She was a member of the Retired Nurses of the Northern Berkshires, the Red Hat Society and a communicant of St. Patrick’s Church in Williamstown. A famous poet once wrote about the nursing profession, and Claire lived by these words, “As a nurse, we have an opportunity to heal the hearts, minds, souls and bodies of our patients. They may forget your name, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” None of us will ever forget how Claire made us feel.
Claire Putman is survived by her husband, Roger G. Putman; three sons, Michael S. Noetzel (and wife Lisa Matysiewicz) of Charlestown, MA; John K. Noetzel (and Darlene Lane) of Princetown, NY; and Peter J. Noetzel of Schenectady, NY; her sister Shirley Nary of Dickinson, TX; two nephews David Cutler (and wife Sandra Rondeau Cutler) of Dickinson, TX, and Daniel Cutler (and wife Regina Cutler) of Baytown, TX; one niece, Deborah Cutler Williams (and husband Darrel Williams) of Pasadena, TX; a grand-niece and a grand-nephew, and her mother-in-law Margaret Putman of Williamstown.
Services will take place Friday June 2, 2017 at 10:15 a.m. from the FLYNN & DAGNOLI- MONTAGNA FUNERAL HOME, WEST CHAPELS, 521 West Main Street, North Adams, MA 01247. Followed by a Liturgy of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. at St's Patrick and Raphael Church, 63 Southworth Street, Williamstown. Burial will follow at Eastlawn Cemetery, Williamstown. Calling hours at the funeral home will be Thursday from 5-8 p.m. at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the St. Luke’s School of Nursing Alumni Scholarship Fund and St. Patrick’s Church Food Pantry. To add to the Book of Memories, please visit www.flynndagnolifuneralhomes.com.