Regina officials reflect on nun’s legacy at school

By: Maria Allard | Warren Weekly | Published August 29, 2019

 Regina High School Sister Mary Hyacinth Czerapowicz, who served for 55 years at the school, died  Aug. 17 at the age of 90.

Regina High School Sister Mary Hyacinth Czerapowicz, who served for 55 years at the school, died Aug. 17 at the age of 90.

Photo provided by Regina High School

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WARREN — Whenever students at Regina High School saw Sister Mary Hyacinth Czerapowicz in the hallways, they immediately made sure their socks were properly pulled up and their uniforms were in good order.

“Sister Hyacinth was a rule follower,” Regina Principal Ann Diamond said. “Everything had to be by the book.”

On Aug. 17, the beloved nun who touched many lives while teaching at the all-girls Catholic high school, died at the age of 90 at a local hospital. She leaves behind a long legacy at the school, which opened its doors in Harper Woods in 1956 and then moved to Warren in 2007.

Sister Hyacinth entered the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis in 1944 from St. John Cantius parish in Cleveland, Ohio, according to Regina’s website, regi nahs.com.

She was a teacher and organist at various parish schools in Ohio, Connecticut and Michigan. Sister Hyacinth served for 55 years at Regina, where she taught English, religion and became assistant principal in 1971, and through the years moved into other administrative positions. She also was the yearbook adviser.

She retired on June 9 and was honored at a special celebration given by Regina High School.

Diamond, a 1994 Regina graduate, had Sister Hyacinth as a teacher and also got to know her as a colleague. She remembers the nun’s personal teaching style.

“She gave that firm level of discipline in (a) loving, nurturing way,” Diamond said. “Once you got her to crack that hard exterior, she was very dedicated to the women that went to the school.”

Regina Assistant Principal Karen Forys, whose daughter graduated in 2000, first met Sister Hyacinth in 1984 when her husband began teaching at the school. Forys, who worked at the school from 1988 to 1994 and then returned in 2006, said Sister Hyacinth was a tradition holder and had high standards of conduct for herself and the community. Being organized also was a priority.

“She was so meticulous in her record keeping,” Forys said. “She was very smart. She was still sharp as a tack. She was very faithful to the students, to Jesus and in her devotion (to) prayer life.”

The Golubski Deliberato Funeral Home in Garfield Heights, Ohio, handled Sister Hyacinth’s funeral, followed by interment at Calvary Cemetery in Cleveland.

According to the funeral home’s online obituary, she was the daughter of John and Mary (nee Mizula), both deceased; and the loving sister of Josephine Czerapowicz and the late Helen Winkler, John Czerapowicz and Mary Spradley. She also was an aunt and a great-aunt to many in her family.

A memorial Mass to pay tribute to Sister Hyacinth is scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 26 at the Regina High School chapel, 13900 Masonic Blvd. in Warren. Fr. Ron Victor will be the celebrant. The public is welcome to attend.

A scholarship had previously been established at Regina in honor of both Sister Hyacinth and Sister Mary Leanne, who is retired from Regina. The Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis Endowment Scholarship honors the two educators’ combined service of 100 years to Regina High School.

The scholarship helps families pay for tuition. To donate to the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis Endowment Scholarship, visit reginahs.com.

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