Family Memories of Catherine


Catherine Chinn (Cathy) was born on November 4, 1934.   At about the age of two or 2 ½ she contracted spinal meningitis.  After a high fever that apparently lasted several days she recovered but with brain damage and the inability to walk without leg braces.  (I remember my Mother’s recollection that at the hospital she was packed in ice to lower the fever, but by then the damage had been done)  Her mentality was that of a five or six year old child, but she was always smiling and happy.  A few years later doctors suggested an operation on her legs that, if she had it, would allow her to walk normally.  My parents consented.  The operation was not a success.  During the process ligaments in Catherine’s legs were cut too short causing both feet to curl at the ankles, her right one more severely than her left as I recall.  After that she was not able to walk again.  For the rest of her life until 1965 my parents (Archie & Elsie (Uren) Chinn provided all of Catherine’s care.


In 1963 my father retired (age 65) from a job he long held in the United States.  He, along with my mother and Catherine returned to Camborne (their birthplace) in September 1963.  In 1965 the Camborne Council agreed to sponsor Catherine’s admittance to St. Teresa’s Cheshire Home, Penzance.  She had been a patient there since (over 40 years).  She was very happy at St. Teresa’s.


Catherine had two brothers, The Reverend Edward Chinn (an Episcopal priest in the U.S. deceased 2003) and Gordon Jack Chinn (a retired teacher and real estate salesperson in the U.S.).  She is survived by six nieces and nephews, Kathy (Sullivan), Linda Marie Chinn, Stephen Mark Chinn, Jacquelyn (Grande), Robyn (Mohr) and Nora (Konigsbauer), numerous cousins including Roger Bray who, along with his partner Gail Gessey, have been a godsend and a great help at this stressful time, two Aunts (Annie & Muriel in Cornwall) both in their nineties  and many great nieces and nephews.


Catherine passed away during the night of February 4, 2006.  God grant you peace, our sister, aunt, cousin, friend.




Ye Olde Editor