Diana Joan Foster
Diana Joan Foster was born in Framingham, Massachusetts, on November 25, 1934, the third of three daughters of Ruth Shaffer Foster and Scott Foster. She was known as “DJ” when young, and later preferred to be called “Dee”. She attended public schools in her home town, and then went on to study nursing at Children’s Hospital. Classmate Sandy Erickson recalled, “We all met in the fall of ’52 when we started nursing school, just 36 of us. We had some happy times in the first couple of years. She attracted guys like bees to honey. Then the polio season hit and that was a life changer.” At one point while she had polio she was in an iron lung. Sequelae of the illness necessitated orthopedic surgery to her upper limbs, and she had permanent limitations in arm strength and movement. She did not let this stop her from living a full life, however, and even drove a car with a special knob attached to the steering wheel. She traveled in the United States and lived out her dream of traveling to Africa, as well. Dee became a social worker, working in hospital settings, particularly Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, as well as having a small private psychotherapy practice for a number of years. Later in life she worked with a multilevel marketing financial services firm. She loved animals, particularly dogs. She lived on Park Drive in Boston for many years, until a bequest from her parents enabled her to fulfill a longtime aspiration to build herself a house, which she did in Gloucester. She lived there happily with two Basenjis and a cat, and received with great pleasure the visits of family and friends. In her last years she moved to senior housing in Gloucester. During her final illness her friends and family had a chance to communicate to her how much she had meant to them with her kindness and love through the years. After being hospitalized for all of 2014, she died in Spaulding Hospital in Salem on April 27, 2014. She is survived by her sister Shirley, a niece and four nephews, and numerous cousins. Her remains will be laid to rest in a family plot in Reddington, Indiana.
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