In Memory Of
Burke, Claire Diggles who passed away on 7/22/2005 at the age of 82
Claire I. Burke, 82, of Forest Ave, Middletown, RI formerly of Merton
Road, Newport, died at Grand Islander Health Care Center. She was the
wife of the late James Burke, Jr. Born to the late Raymond J. and
Christina (Gillis) Diggles.
Claire graduated from Rogers High School and the Newport Hospital School of Nursing. After completing nursing school, she joined the US Navy Reserves to assist her country during World War II. She soon met James Burke Jr, and they married. With her Navy obligations fulfilled, they began a family in Newport. In 1968 Mrs. Burke began working at Newport Hospital as a Registered Nurse, retiring in 1983. After her husband James died in 1972, she began many volunteer efforts throughout Newport. Over the years, she volunteered at St. Clare Home, the Edward King Center, Newport Hospital and the coffee shop in the West House. She helped her daughter in law with home day care where the children fondly called her “Grandma Claire”. Mrs. Burke was a lifelong member of St. Mary´s Church, a member of the Edward King Center, the Middletown Senior Center, the Newport Hospital Auxillary, the Newport Hospital School of Nursing Alumni Association and Friends of the Waterfront. She was also a former member of the Catholic Daughters and the St. Mary´s Altar Guild. Claire had a creative and artistic personality, she was always prepared with a camera for family occasions. She enjoyed knitting, painting and crafts, drawing cartoons, hitting the garage sale circuit and rooting for the Red Sox.
She is survived by three sons John Burke of Labelle, FL, Thomas Burke of Newport, RI, and Edward Burke of Newport, RI, two sisters Marjorie Diggles of Middletown, RI, and Mrs. Roberta Raffa of Middletown, RI, seven grandchildren Megan Burke, Kevin Burke, Sarah Burke, Liza Folger, Rob Burke, Erin Burke, and Andrew Burke, six great grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.
She is preceded in death by her sister Janet Diggles DeVeau.
A Mass of Christian Burial was held in St. Mary's Church, Spring Street, Newport.