Dolores Mulvihill Zebrowski, a World War II veteran, former director of nursing at Southampton Hospital, preservationist and lifelong resident of Sag Harbor, died on Wednesday, October 24 at Southampton Hospital. She was 90 years old. Born on Glover Street on May 6, 1922, she was predeceased by her sister Elizabeth in 1919 and her brothers Daniel in 1991 and William in 2004.
Mrs. Zebrowski attended St. Andrew’s School and Pierson High School, from which she graduated in 1940. She attended the Southampton Hospital School of Nursing and received her diploma as a registered nurse. She was commissioned into the Army Nurse Corps in March of 1945, and was assigned to the 1247th Hospital Train Unit, which was responsible for transporting groups of injured and sick soldiers returning from both the European and Pacific Theatres to hospitals near their homes. After the war ended, she served at the hospital at MacDill Field in Tampa, Florida until her discharge as a First Lieutenant in February, 1947.
Her service was recognized by the award of the American Theatre of Operations Campaign Medal and the World War II Victory Medal, and more recently the New York State Medal for Merit. The 1247th was also awarded a Meritorious Unit Citation during this period. Of her wartime service, which often required her to be the lone night-duty nurse on the hospital train, Mrs. Zebrowski said in a 2007 interview, “ I looked forward to it, because I like excitement and I felt a duty to go. Right now, if I could be young again, I’d be at the big hospital in Germany where all the Iraq injured are sent.”
Returning to Sag Harbor after her discharge, Mrs. Zebrowski began a long career at Southampton Hospital. She received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing and Masters Degrees in Nursing Education from NYU and in Health Administration from C.W. Post University. Rising through the hospital’s organization, she served as both Director of Nursing and Assistant Administrator. In these positions she was a champion of increased responsibility and recognition of the nursing service at the hospital. During this period, she was chosen to be one of a select group of senior nursing officials to visit the People’s Republic of China shortly after full diplomatic relations were restored in the early 1970s. After her retirement in 1984, she continued to serve the hospital and the community as a member of the hospital’s Board of Directors until 2007, closing out a career of service crossing six decades.
Her marriage to Charles Zebrowski in 1953 ended in divorce.
A world traveler, Mrs. Zebrowski traveled extensively to Europe, Russia, South America and the Far East aboard some of the world’s most famous ocean liners including the United States, the Bremen, the Michaelangelo, the Queen Elizabeth 2, and the Queen Mary 2. She completed the full world cruise on board the QE2 six times.
Devoted more to her family than perhaps to anything else in her life, Mrs. Zebrowski loved to share time and experiences with her many relatives. Whether it was having various family members join her for portions of her many cruises, hosting a table at the Hampton Classic or being the catalyst for many large family gatherings, she was at her best when planning the next event.
Mrs. Zebrowski became active in local preservation efforts which led in part to her decision to sell the family farm “The Brickilns” to the Town of Southampton as a nature preserve rather than to developers. This property is now the centerpiece of the Anna and Daniel Mulvihill Preserve, open for all to hike its trails.
Mrs. Zebrowski was active throughout the community. She was a 65-year member of the Chelberg & Battle Post of the American Legion, as well as an active member of the Legion Auxiliary, the Columbiettes and the Army Nurse Corps Association. She was a member of the Southampton Bath and Tennis Club, the Noyac Golf Club, the Sag Harbor Yacht Club, the Breakwater Yacht Club, and an avid supporter of the South Fork Natural History Museum, the Southampton Trails Association, the Group for the East End, the Peconic Land Trust and Cormaria Retreat House. She was a lifelong member and supporter of St. Andrew’s Church.
Dolores is survived by her nephew Daniel F. Mulvihill , and nieces Mary Pecoraro, Carol Ahlers, Nancy Mulvihill and Mary Ann Mulvihill-Decker as well as several cousins, grand-nieces and grand-nephews.
A wake will be held at Yardley and Pino Funeral Home on Sunday, November 4th. from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. A funeral mass will be held on Monday, November 5 at St. Andrew’s Church at 11 a.m., with interment following at St. Andrew’s Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Cormaria Retreat House, P. O. Box 1993, Sag Harbor, NY 11963, or to the American Legion’s Chelberg & Battle Post #388 Scholarship Fund, P. O. Box 541, Sag Harbor, NY 11963.