Sister Lucie Leonard, Mount Carmel nun and nurse, dies at 88 _lowres

Sister Lucie Leonard

Sister Lucie Leonard, a member of the Sisters of Mount Carmel for 69 years, died Friday at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center in Algiers.

She was 88.

Leonard, who entered the Congregation of Our Lady of Mount Carmel at 17, devoted more than 60 years to nursing. She worked in several hospitals throughout Louisiana and won numerous awards, including the Louisiana State Nurses Association Service Award.

In her later years, she became known for creating a “spiritual first aid kit” — including a rosary, holy water and crucifixes from deceased sisters of Mount Carmel — at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center, where she served as a volunteer and pastoral care assistant.

Born in 1927 in Thibodaux, Leonard entered the Congregation of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in 1944. She made her first profession in 1947 and pronounced her perpetual vows in 1950. She celebrated her 60th jubilee in 2007.

She taught at St. James Major School in New Orleans from 1947-49 and 1951-52.

After deciding to pursue nursing, Leonard received a bachelor’s degree in nursing from LSU and a master’s degree from Catholic University in Washington, D.C.

As a nurse, she worked at St. Joseph Hospital in Thibodaux, Carmel Hospital in Kaplan and Mercy Hospital in New Orleans.

In 1998, she was honored with the Louisiana State Nurses Association Service Award, and in 2003, she was inducted into the association’s Hall of Fame.

While serving at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center, she received the LeadingAge Gulf States Distinguished Service Award for her contributions toward the welfare of older people.

She served as a continuing education program manager and nurse consultant for the Louisiana Board of Nursing and director of continuing education for the Louisiana State Nurses Association.

She also served her order of nuns as an executive councilor, motherhouse infirmary nurse and motherhouse administrative assistant.

In 2010, she became a pastoral care assistant at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center. She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer two years later.

Survivors include a brother, Gerard Leonard, of Lockport, and four sisters: Sister Anne Leonard, of New Orleans; Cecelia A. Richard, of Thibodaux; Lorraine F. Folse, of Houma; and Miriam Esteve, of Thibodaux.

A Mass will be celebrated at 9:30 a.m. Monday at Our Lady of Wisdom Healthcare Center, 5600 Gen. de Gaulle Drive, New Orleans. Visitation will be from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., with the rosary at 9 a.m. Interment will be in St. Louis Cemetery No. 3. Jacob Schoen and Son Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.