August 31, 2015
Sister Myra ND 5901 ⇒ PDF Download
Myra Dana AVSEC
(formerly Sister Mary Antonmarie)
Christ the King Province, Chardon, Ohio, USA
Date and Place of Birth: June 13, 1942 Cleveland, Ohio
Date and Place of Profession: August 16, 1963 Chardon, Ohio
Date and Place of Death: August 31, 2015 Health Care Center, Chardon
Date and Place of Funeral: September 4, 2015 Chardon, Ohio
Date and Place of Burial: September 4, 2015 Resurrection Cemetery, Chardon, Ohio
As the oldest of six children born to Anthony and Nancy (Frank) Avsec, Myra learned at an early age the importance of strong family bonds to be nourished and cherished. Growing up in Cleveland and attending St. Vitus Church and School, her Slovenian heritage was fostered and celebrated. It was an integral part of Myra’s life, evidenced by her love for each family member and the many friends with whom she stayed connected through life. Her infectious smile generated trust, easy communication and friendship.
After graduation from Notre Dame Academy, Cleveland, Myra entered the Sisters of Notre Dame on September 8, 1960. She had one cousin, Sister Mary St. Bernadine, now Sister Mary, already a member of the community. At investment Myra received the name Sister Mary Antonmarie. Later, she returned to her baptismal name.
During her first twenty-four years of ministry in food service, Sister Myra prepared thousands of meals for sisters in community, for the high school cafeteria and the boarding school. She learned quantity cooking quickly! Sister collected favorite recipes and learned about food preparation and good food choices. At times, she found this service challenging because of the time needed to prepare meals and be away from the rest of the community and its activities. The sisters with whom she ministered became a vital support in day to day living. Sister Myra nourished others spiritually by becoming a Eucharistic Minister at St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Gates Mills, Ohio, and teacher’s aide in the preschool program. She loved being with the children and used her skills as a “big sister” to help them navigate their first school experiences.
Sister Myra was a master photographer. Her photos form a wonderful backdrop of the spaces, places and people she loved. She saw not only with her camera lens, but with her heart. Sisters visiting from other provinces received the gift of a CD with pictures of the Chardon property displaying the beauty of creation in all seasons. Her interest in genealogy prompted research on family history—a lasting legacy to her family.
Having undergone several surgeries and health issues, Sister Myra was no stranger to suffering and chronic pain. In 2013, she was diagnosed with a terminal llness. Her immediate response—“I am not afraid of dying”—gave evidence of the strong and practical faith underlying her daily life. Her decision to forego further treatment inspired all who walked closely with her. In this life, Sister counted on God’s love, the love of her family and the compassionate love of her sisters and friends. May she rejoice now in new life found in God’s eternal embrace.