Barber, Susan A. (Phelon), 1885-1967, Nurse, World War 1 Veteran


Barber, Susan A. (Phelon), 1885-1967, Nurse, World War 1 Veteran


Susan (Phelon) Barber, 1885-1967. World War 1 veteran.

Kathleen Clifford Ivory shared this remembrance of Sue Phelon:

SUE PHELON & Aldrich Family

Sue Phelon played an almost larger than life role in our family's history because it was honestly believed she had been the one to save my Aunt May's life.
When my Aunt May was around nine years old she became very ill.  It was cold weather and she had come down with a very bad cough and was very sick.  She was being cared for by the family in the downstairs living room where she could be kept warm by the big wood burning stove. 

Evey precaution was taken to keep the room warm with windows closed tight and curtains drawn to prevent drafts.  May worsened.  Her cough did not improve and her breathing became more difficult.

Her parents, Ruth and George Aldrich, began to truly fear for her life and decided to call in Sue Phelan as a nurse.  When Sue arrived she watched May struggling to breath and decided that the problem was probably pneumonia. 

To the surprise of the family, her first course of action was to pull the curtains aside, and throw open the window by the bed. The fresh, although cold, air rushed in and from that point on May began to improve. Little by little her struggle to breathe lessened and her sickness disappeared. 

As the story was told all believed it was the increased supply of oxygen that Sue had provided which made her well. 

May grew up, became a teacher, married, had children and lived to a ripe old age. She and Sue Phelan became very good friends.

WESTFIELD-Mrs. Susan (Phelon) Barber, 82, of 65 Pochassic St. died Tuesday in Noble Hospital. A Native of Granville, she was born July 31, 1885, Daughter of John W. and Sarah (Robinson) Phelon. She was Graduated from Westfield High School in the class of 1903 where her future husband was a classmate. After teaching school for a time, she entered a nursing course at General Hospital, Augusta, Me. In September, 1918, she enlisted in the Army Nurses Corps and served six months in France, returning here in May, 1919. She was a member of the Long Beach Cal. American Legion post and of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Besides her husband, Cecil R. Barber, She leaves two brothers, John L. Phelon of Mystic, Conn., and Pearl P. Phelon of Granville and several nieces and nephews. Rev. Lawrence C. Ford, Jr. interim pastor of United Church of christ, Second Congregational, will officiate at a memorial service Thursday at 1:30 at Healey Funeral Home. Burial will be at the convenience of the family, 

Also see school photos:
Unknown Date (probably after 1895):CLICK HERE


Robert Hague


1. Military image: Granville Library Historical Room.
2. Portrait from
3. Portrait: Granville Library Historical Room (donated to the Historical Room 2021by Robert Hague)

Bibliographic Citation

Kathleen Clifford Ivory recalls her aunt, May Aldrich Hague, having been very sick with an extremely high fever. Susan Phelon, a nurse, came to the Nelson/Aldrich home and took charge of the situation. She is remembered as quite possibly saving May's life.


“Barber, Susan A. (Phelon), 1885-1967, Nurse, World War 1 Veteran,” Granville History Digital Collection, accessed May 20, 2024,


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