As Patrick W. O’Leary of Louisville, Kentucky has returned to the USA following his recent holiday in Ireland he continues to maintain important links with his favourite Millstreet ancestral home. During his research he has come across a wonderfully relevant newspaper cutting from “The Press Democrat” of Monday, 4th Sept. 1967. Here he shares the cutting with us. Click on the images to enlarge…The text in the article will be enhanced when enlarged. (S.R.)
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Sister Thomas Aquinas, principal of St. John’s School in Healdsburg, talks with Mrs Robert Medley, Mothers Club President, and Albert Ghiglieri during a reception last week in her honour. Sister Thomas is returning to Ireland for assignment to Drishane Convent, Millstreet, County Cork, motherhouse of the Sisters of the Holy Infant Jesus. She was among the first group of sisters who came to Healdsburg from Ireland to teach at the school when it opened in 1950. After two years as a principal at the school, she served for several years in Colma, then returned to Healdsburg in 1961. The first school had 89 students in four grades. Last year it had grown to 307 students in eight grades. In her new assignment, Sister Thimas will be mother superior to nearly 80 sisters and in charge of a school, novitiate, domestic science department and knitting industry.
Nuns Then … Sister Aquinas Ford (second from left) with the Rev Mother Stanislaus and Sister Anne Crowley at Shannon Airport prior to their departure to Healdsburg in September 1950, where they opened the first house of the Order of the Holy Infant Jesus. Also in the group were Sister Augustine, Sister Cornelius, and Miss Margo Ryan, AOA hostess.[Healdsburg Tribune, Enterprise and Scimitar, Number 68, 18 September 1975]
St. John’s faculty In 1961: (front row left to right) Sifter Rosario. Sister Panline. Sister Marie Therese, Sister Anne, Sister Mary, (back row) Father Lombardi, Virginia Giovanetti, Dixon Smith, Jeanine Blackner, and Father Adamaski. 
Members of the Sisters of the Infant Jesus gathered In front of St. John’s Rectory before their testimonial dinner at the Villa Chanticleer, (front 1 • r) Sister Patricia Klely, principal St. Veronica’s, So. San Francisco; Sr. Pat Armato, Holy Angels, Colma; Sr. Mary Therese Mortarty, U. of Washington; Sr. Rosario McAuliffe, St. Veronica’s; Sr. Mary Madden, St. John’s, Healdsburg; Sr. Anne Crowley, St. John’s; Sr. Margaret Cotter, St. Veronica’s, (back I -r) Sr. Hilary O’Rourke, Holy Angels; Sr. Evelyn Houlihan, St. Veronica’s; Sr. Eilsh Ahearn, Holy Angels; Sr. Fintan
McAuliffe, St. John’s; Sr. Helen Keane, Holy Angels; Sr. Mary Cotter, St. John’s; Sr. Pauline Dwyer, principal Holy Angels and mother superior for California; Mother Maria Rosario Brandoly, mother general Paris; Sr. Monica Dunne, St. John’s; Mother Mark Billlet, Paris; Sr. Barbara Balbi, St. Veronica’s; Sr. Francis Xavier O’Shea, Paris; Sr. Thomas Aquinas Ford. St. Veronica’s and first principal St. John’s; Sr. Cecilia Cronin, San Francisco and previous principal St. John’s. 
Sr. Thomas Aquinas Ford died on April 23rd 1993, aged 84 and is buried in the Nun’s section in Drishane. [see FindAGrave]