Jean graduated from St. Gregory’s High School, Dorchester, MA and Boston State College with a Major in English. She went on to receive Master’s Degrees in English and Guidance/Counseling from the University of Massachusetts, Boston, MA.
She began her 35 year teaching career at the Grover Cleveland Middle School, Dorchester, MA and then moved to Hyde Park High School in the first years of desegregation. Although they were turbulent times, Jean always worked hard to provide her students with the very best learning experiences. She thoroughly enjoyed her students and was often a favorite teacher and mentor to many of them. From there, she transferred to Boston Latin School where she became head of the English Department for a few years and then a member of the English Faculty, continuing to teach and mentor students throughout her career. She had numerous student teachers from a variety of colleges, most notably Boston College and Simmons College, many of whom went on to become successful teachers themselves. Jean’s name appears in the Who’s Who of American Teachers, having been nominated by many of her former students for several years.
Throughout her full-time teaching career, Jean also privately tutored many students in SAT preparation as well tutoring in reading and writing skills to younger students. Jean continued this throughout her retirement, always working to develop self-confidence as well as English skills in her students. She was expert at not only raising scores but raising spirits and building positive rapport them. For Jean, teaching was a very personal and noble profession – one of which to be most proud. And one into which she poured her warmth, heart and humor as well as her expertise.
Jean was a caring and protective big sister to her two younger siblings, her sister Ann (Statsky) and her brother, John Morelli, taking on responsibilities well beyond her years when her beloved father passed away during her junior year of high school. She was a constant support to her mother, Edna (Curley) Morelli in maintaining as normal a family life as possible. Well into adulthood, Jean never failed to worry about them and look after them – and her brother-in-law, Richard Statsky, continuing to be supportive and loving in innumerable ways.
Jean was a loving and doting aunt to her niece, Jennifer Statsky, whom she nurtured and loved as her own. She was unendingly proud of Jen’s many successes from the first moments of her arrival to her skills as a writer for Jimmy Fallon and Amy Poehler, among many others.
Jean had a supreme ability for making and keeping friends through her lifetime. She was known by her countless friends to be unfailingly loyal and supportive. A person of great integrity and kindness, she exemplified the qualities of being fully present and listening with care and concern – skills she felt were dying arts.
Jean left this world much too soon but she left it a much better place. She was rich in friends, love and an unendingly humorous view of the world. She offered help and kindness to strangers as well as friends. Whoever was in need and came into contact with Jean always left blessed by having met her.
The void her passing leaves will never be filled. She was a richly witty, warm and generous spirit who will be missed by many. Inspired by “Hamlet” and taking liberties with Shakespeare, her beloved family and friends might well say:
“We shall not look upon her like again.”
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated in St. Elizabeth’s Church, MILTON, Thurs., April 28, at 10 o’clock. Visiting Hours at the Dolan & Chapman Funeral Home, 5 Canton Ave., MILTON VILLAGE, April 27, Weds. 4-8pm. Interment Private. 35 yr. teacher, Boston Latin School. If desired, contributions in Jean’s memory may be sent to St. Anthony’s Shrine, 100 Arch St., Boston, MA 02110.