12/25/53 – 06/18/2018
Karen Bronk of Turner died peacefully at the Hospice House on June 18th after a three-year struggle with cancer.
Karen was born in Connecticut into a family which included six brothers. The family lived for a time in Germany before moving back to the States.
Karen graduated from UMass Boston and eventually earned a Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of New England.
Karen and her husband, Peter Driscoll, moved to Maine from Boston in 1979 seeking a more peaceful and rural lifestyle. They first settled in Salem before moving to Turner in 1990.
Karen worked as a professional social worker all of her adult life. She worked in several local agencies including Tri-County Mental Health, Androscoggin Home Health and Hospice Services, and the Spurwink School. For the past 16 years, she has been a behavioral health specialist working with DFD Russell Medical Center in Turner where she provided kindness, support and help for individuals struggling with life challenges to find their own path for success.
Karen was a woman of many talents and interests. She was an avid reader. She loved to garden, her home surrounded by beautiful flowering trees, shrubs and plants. She was an accomplished equestrian and loved the gentle and subtle relationship she was able to develop with her horses. She was a marathoner. And she was a skilled canoeist. Karen and Peter paddled hundreds of miles of wilderness rivers in Maine and Canada. For a short time, they operated a small canoe camping business.
Nothing brought Karen more joy than her family. Karen and Peter have been together through life’s joys, hardships and adventures for more than 40 years. Theirs was a loving, respectful and committed relationship.
Karen decided later in life that she wanted to become a mother. She began the process that led to the arrival of first Rufino (now 16) and later Manuel (now 14) into their family. She was a fabulous mother and worked tirelessly to create a home environment that was nurturing, gentle, challenging and supportive. She took great pride in witnessing her two sons grow into fine and mature young men.
Karen was an incredibly kind and gentle soul. She also possessed a core strength that sustained her through her difficult struggle with cancer. She continued to work until the last month of her life because she viewed her work as a commitment to making her corner of the world a better place. She is fondly remembered by many friends and colleagues.
She is survived by her husband, Peter, and sons Rufino and Manuel, and five brothers.
Gifts in her memory can be made to the Karen Bronk fund at DFD Russell Medical Center in Turner which will be used to support unmet patient needs.
A Memorial Service to celebrate her life will be scheduled in the near future.