Obituary for Rose Gallagher Sheppard
Rose Gallagher Sheppard (McGettigan)
It is with great sadness that the family of Rose Gallagher Sheppard (McGettigan) announce that
she passed away peacefully at James Paton Memorial Hospital on June 6, 2017 at the age of 94
years. She was a wonderful mother, kind person, dear friend to many, and touched the lives of
anyone who knew her.
Rose was born in Donegal, Ireland, on May 20th, 1923. She had a vocation to be a nurse. She
left Ireland to train in London in 1941. She excelled in her profession and nursed in a number of
hospitals in London throughout the Second World War.
After the war, in 1953 Rose immigrated to Newfoundland with fellow nurse and lifelong friend
Bridget Rice Cheeks to nurse in Gander. Later she was transferred to Placentia to be the
supervisory nurse where she was the supervisory nurse responsible for all departments of the
hospital, even payroll much to her dismay. This was a very challenging role as there was only
one doctor and when the doctor was away all births and minor surgeries were her sole
responsibility. Rose’s nursing experience also included working in the TB sanatorium in
Kentville, Nova Scotia. In her very humorous fashion, Rose told her family and friends many
fascinating stories. These stories included tales about her experiences working as a nurse in the
cottage hospital system and her more harrowing stories about nursing in London during World
War II while bombs were falling on the hospital.
Rose met the love of her life, Douglas Sheppard, at the Queen’s Coronation Ball in Gander in
1953. They married in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1955 and returned to Gander to raise their family.
This was a big decision for Rose, as she was from a very large loving Irish family which she knew
she would miss dearly if she moved permanently to Newfoundland.
It was a move she never regretted as she made many wonderful friends and loved her life in
Newfoundland. Her fondest memories included spending time with her friends and family,
playing the odd game of 120’s and exploring this beautiful province and Canada.
Rose was predeceased by best friend and loving husband of 57 years Douglas Sheppard,
parents; Edward and Margaret McGettigan, brothers: Edward, Patrick, John, and Seamus.
sisters: Margaret, Kathleen, and Nora.
Left to mourn son: Paul (Lori), daughters: Judy Ash (Sean), Mary Rose Blackmore (Brian), Ethna
Richters (Fred), grandchildren: Adam Blackmore (Danielle), Seamus Blackmore (Ann), Taylor
Sheppard, Evan Sheppard, Madison Sheppard, and great grandchild Rory Blackmore, brother:
Anthony McGettigan, sisters: Mary (Paddy) Smith, Ethna (Brian) Healy, and Nuala Russel,
brother- in- law: Cyril Sheppard (Millicent) Corner Brook, many loving nieces & nephews,
Marion Cheeks and family, and loving god-daughter Gertie & husband Murray Strickland.
Special thanks to all the staff of the Nightingale Manor and the nursing staff of James Paton
Memorial Hospital for their wonderful care and support of Rose.
Visitation is on Thursday, June 8th 2017 from from 2:00 P.M. - 4:00 P.M. and from 7:00 – 9:00
PM at Stacey’s Funeral Home. A funeral service celebrating her life will be held the following
day on Friday, June 9th, 10:00 A.M. at St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church, Bishop Street,
Gander, NL. Interment will follow at All Saints Cemetery. A reception will follow at the
Donations in Rose’s memory may be made to Cobbs Pond Park Rotary Foundation. Messages
of condolence can be left at www.staceysfuneralhome.com.