Katherine Ann Lapre will be remembered as a dedicated nurse, a caring person, and a big-hearted animal lover, who always supported local pet shelters.
“She was an amazing nurse,” said her daughter, Charlotte Lapre Cardoso of New Bedford. “She loved her job, and she loved her patients.” Lapre typically worked the second shift at St. Luke’s Hospital from 3 to 11 p.m., Cardoso said.
On weekends, the Lapre family enjoyed taking trips to nearby destinations — La Salette Shrine in Attleboro, Edaville Railroad in Carver, and Lincoln Park in Dartmouth. Occasionally the family would spend a weekend in New Hampshire, visiting Storyland and other attractions, Lapre Cardoso said.
“My father was a general manager at several car dealerships, so we always had a lot of cars – Mustangs, Cadillacs, all kinds of cars,” she said. Lapre’s prized automobile was a little tan Mustang that she drove everywhere during the 1980s, Lapre Cardoso said. “She loved that car.”
Lapre was born in New Bedford and lived her entire life in the city. She graduated from Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School’s nursing program, and was a member of Trinity United Methodist Church and later St. Paul’s United Methodist Church.
She died April 28, 2020, at St, Luke’s Hospital after contracting COVID-19. She was 69.
“She was a very feisty spirit, sometimes stubborn,” her daughter said. “A simple, yet classy lady, who always wore makeup and loved clothes and shoes — right until the very end.”
Lapre enjoyed watching her favorite soap opera, “Days of Our Lives,” along with “The Price is Right” and classic TV shows. “She loved ‘The Golden Girls,’ ” Lapre Cardoso said.
She also loved being home with her animals. Lapre always adopted her pets from animal shelters, and had several cats over the years, including a big male tabby named Cupcake, who now lives with Lapre Cardoso’s brother, Jason Lapre. “He looks just like Garfield.”
Lapre Cardoso said her mom’s favorite pet was a white toy poodle named Boo. “He was a mischievous little thing, who loved to get into the trash after spaghetti night, which was not a good thing, because he was all white.”
Lapre also was a loving daughter, who frequently visited her mother at Sacred Heart Nursing Home in New Bedford. “She and my aunt would be at that nursing home pretty much every day for my grandmother … They were very close.”
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Lapre and her husband divorced in the 1980s, her daughter said. And in her later years, she suffered a series of health issues, including shingles, meningitis and early-stage dementia, which left her unable to care for herself, her daughter said.
She spent the last years of her life at Brandon Woods Nursing Home in Dartmouth.
“She loved her children,” Lapre Cardoso said. “She wasn’t a very social person, but she enjoyed life.”
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