“To know her was to love her”; our sweet and feisty Valerie Jean passed into eternal life on Thursday, May 21, 2020 at Landmark Medical Center in Woonsocket.
Born in Boston to the late, Margaret Ann Lewis-Janes and Walter Russell, she was raised in a binuclear family along with her eleven siblings in Brockton, MA. She attended local schools such as East Junior and Brockton High School. She continued her education at P.I.C. Program in order to obtain her GED in the 1990s.
Valerie was an independent and very hard-working woman. Always reliable, she never missed a day of work even during her illness. She enjoyed being a professional machine operator and working with her hands to solve problems. She had a courageous and competitive personality. She enjoyed family time, playing volleyball, playing cards, and video games with her grand-children. Her life-long passion was reading romance & crime novels. Noted for her beautifully flowing cursive hand writing, Valerie privately created poetry and had a hidden talent for writing; her works will now become treasured keepsakes. Valerie was a music enthusiast since childhood and had a diverse of collection of music records, CD’s, and electronics.
She found solace and enjoyment in frequent listening to her prized recordings of her favorite music, especially Country and R & B; she was an avid collector of such music from the 1970s and on. Among her favorite artists were Celine Dion, Uncle Kracker, and Journey, to name a few. Her kind, generous, and caring nature combined with a quiet simplicity enabled her to be uniquely herself while still being able to adapt to her environment. She always provided a shoulder to lean on, not only for her family and friends, but to any person in need. If Valerie had a farewell message for us, it would be found in these words:
“When tomorrow starts without me, please try to understand that an angel came and called my name and took me by the hand. The angel said my place was ready, in heaven far above, and that I’d have to leave behind all those I dearly love. But when I walked through heaven’s gates, I felt so much at home, for God looked down, smiled at me, and said “Welcome Home”. So when tomorrow starts without me, don’t think we’re far apart, for every time you think of me, I’m right there in your heart.”
In addition to her mother and 11 siblings, Valerie is survived by her 3 children, Jennifer M. Arnaldy, Robyn A. Russell, and Jason M. Russell in addition to 8 grandchildren, and 2 beautiful Great-granddaughters. Prior to her diagnosed illnesses, she lived in Berlin New Hampshire with her former husband, John Dion. Together with additional friends and in-laws, Valerie will be sorely missed but fondly remembered.
In lieu of flowers, contribution to Dana-Faber Women’s Cancer Research, P.O. Box 849168, Boston, MA 02445 would be appreciated
Services for Valerie are being considered for a future date; for more details please reach out to:
Jennifer M. Arnaldy’s email at Jarnaldy79@gmail.com Robyn A. Russell’s email at Robyn.firstname.lastname@example.org