A Newsday reader sent the following letter to the newspaper after Sister Mary Georgine Ayer’s obituary was published on March 31, 2017.
I opened the paper today and saw the obituary you wrote for Mary Ayers. On a quick glance, I saw that she had been a Dominican nun so I continued reading and realized that she was Sister Georgine, my 7th-grade teacher from Good Shepherd Catholic School in Brooklyn. I remember her vividly. For me, as a 12-year-old, Sister Georgine was an imposing figure! Not in stature, but in demeanor. She looked like she meant business!….and the habit and robes only enhanced that appearance!! But in those days with classes of almost 40 kids, the nuns had to give that outward appearance.
Well, I was to discover that Sister Georgine was, as stated in your article, “gentle, firm and kind.” Yes, she was strict, but she created an atmosphere where you were encouraged and learned. She noticed that I had some artistic ability and encouraged me to take an after-school art class in the neighboring public school. Although I never continued on an artistic path, I remember her compliments and positive feedback on my artwork. In class, we had a few characters and she knew how to keep them in line, but they could get a good chuckle out of her with their antics.
It was nice to get some insight into Sister Georgine’s life. She was a most positive role model for me. The nuns in Good Shepherd School at that time were very memorable. They were in your life for a relatively short time, but their kindness and dedication made a positive lasting impression on you.
May God Bless Sister Mary Georgine and all the Dominican Sisters. Thank you for writing about her.
Sincerely, Michael Fitzpatrick, Good Shepherd Class of ’68