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Frances M. Coutinho

August 26, 1917 - April 15, 2014

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Frances M. Coutinho, 96, of Hopkinton, MA passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 15, 2014 surrounded by her loving family. She was the beloved wife of the late Manuel N. Coutinho and devoted mother of Anne-Marie Moore, Barbara Coutinho and husband Thomas Williams, Cissy Coutinho and Michael Childs, John Coutinho and wife Brenda, and Paul Coutinho and fianc? Paula Kweder. She was the sister of Dolores Murphy, the late John Cancian, and sister-in-law to Rosemary Cancian. She leaves eight grandchildren: Monroe, Maria, Laurie, Nicholas, Benjamin, Emily, Mia, Isabelle, and four great-grandchildren: Kasey, Jameson, Jackson, and Alexandra. She also leaves many nieces and nephews, extended family members, and dear friends.
A lifelong learner, Frances was a Registered Nurse, influential educator, published poet, and accomplished artist. She achieved degrees from Chelsea Memorial Hospital School of Nursing, Boston University and Framingham State University.
Frances worked at Boston City Hospital in the 1930s and Winthrop Community Hospital in the 1940s and 1950s while raising her family. In 1967 Frances designed, developed, and directed an award winning Health Careers Program at Winthrop High School. She taught more than five hundred students during her twenty year career. Many became accomplished in Health and other fields and remained in touch over the years.
She was a resident of Winthrop, Swampscott, and Hopkinton and a summer resident of Silver Beach on Cape Cod. A civic minded person, she was a Girl Scout Leader and lead many blood drives. She was a leader of numerous community organizations. She and her late husband were active members of the Cottage Park Yacht Club in Winthrop. While in Swampscott she was an active member of the Marblehead Arrangers Garden Club and the Museum of Fine Arts. In Hopkinton she was a member of the Hopkinton Garden Club, the Cultural Arts Alliance, and attended pottery classes at the Hopkinton Senior Center. Frances served on the prestigious Honorary Committee of the Massachusetts Alliance of Portuguese Speakers with US Senators, the State Governor, and Consuls General of several countries.
A worldwide traveler with her family, they escaped uprisings in Portugal and later in the Dominican Republic.
All her life she carefully coordinated her wardrobe and accessories, and delighted in visiting the hairdresser every week. Frances also loved to entertain. She read countless cookbooks and experimented with recipes. She was very well known for her biscotti.
She embraced a zest for life and loved humor. Her philosophers included Maya Angelou, Leo Buscaglia, and Erma Bombeck. A lover of quotes, proverbs, and political cartoons, she always had a posting on the refrigerator.
Ever politically and socially progressive, she drove her own Packard at age 16, was an ardent Feminist, and fervently supported progressive politics in every election and primary since 1938. She was proud of the fact that the 19th Amendment (Women’s Suffrage Victory) was passed on her third birthday.
Passionate and compassionate?a life well lived.
Visiting hours are Monday, April 21 at Chesmore Funeral Home of Hopkinton from 5-8 PM. Funeral Mass at St. John the Evangelist in Hopkinton on Tuesday at 10 AM. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Campaign for Milford Regional Medical Center (www.supportexcellence.org) or the Manuel N. Coutinho Endowment Fund at Massachusetts Alliance of Portuguese Speakers (www.maps-inc.org)

You can only have one mother,
Patient, kind and true.
No other friend in all the world,
Will be the same to you.
To mother you will turn,
For all her loving kindness,
She asks nothing in return.
As I look upon her picture,
Sweet memories I recall,
Of a face so full of sunshine,
And a smile for one and all.
Sweet Jesus, take this message,
To my dear mother up above:
Tell her how I miss her,
And give her all my love.

Reflections (by Frances Coutinho)
The day never long enough
to complete a given task
Every moment filled with work
More consuming than the last
No time for quiet contemplation
Or gazing at the sky
No time for simple relaxation
to watch the clouds roll by

No time for idle conversation
To enjoy the morning sun
No time for evening sunsets
Before the day is done
no time to ever sit and wonder
What life is all about
Until one day you realize
That time is running out

Now time is moving quietly
More gently than before
Now there is time to write and think
and walk a little slower
Enjoy the gentle morning dew
Walk peacefully by the sea
Enjoy the blessings of my life
That God has given me
Time is slowing up a bit
I’m really glad for that
I want to do a few more things
before it’s time to pack