Bernice Lucinda Fruittrell

August 31, 1919January 24, 2019

Bernice Lucinda Fruittrell, aged 99, died from complications of pneumonia, at The Little Sisters of the Poor, home for the elderly, in Washington D.C., on January 24th 2019. She was born on August 31st, 1919 in Jamaica, West Indies to Mary and Ernest Chen Sem, their tenth and last child. She married Juan Ernesto Fruittrell at the age of 25 and ran their family-owned business with him. They had seven children. She would bear the pain of losing two young adult sons, Mario Juan and Navarro Antonio, then her husband Juan, all under tragic circumstances.

Her spirit of resilience, determination and adventure was on full display when in mid-life she immigrated to New York City, reinventing herself to become a nurses aide who provided home care services for elderly shut-ins in and around New York. She is survived by daughters: Libarta, Marlene, Marcia, sons: Ramon and Rolando, many grand and great-grand children in the U.S. and Canada. She will be missed by her family, her LSOP family and friends.

A memorial mass will be held in a private ceremony in the Chapel at The Little Sisters of the Poor, 4200 Harewood Road, Washington D.C. 20017, on Saturday February 16th at 10:30 a.m. A reception will be held in the Cafe post-service until 2 p.m.

Donations in lieu of flowers can be made to The Little Sisters of the Poor on their website Select Donations: memorial donations. Please type “IMO Bernice Fruittrell” in the notation box. Checks may also be sent directly to Little Sisters of the Poor, 4200 Harewood Road, N.E. Washington, D.C. 20017


  • Memorial Mass Saturday, February 16, 2019

Bernice Lucinda Fruittrell

have a memory or condolence to add?

Gregory Chen

February 16, 2019

Sending condolence and sympathy to all my cousins. Rest in Peace Aunt Shipp. Will always remember your laughter and smile.

God Bless,

Gregory and family

Louis TaBois

February 15, 2019

I remember Aunt Shipp as a kind , calm, quiet person.I will miss here dearly.
May she find peace and happiness in Heaven with Edna (my grandmother) and
all the rest of the family and friends who have gone on before us.

Joanne Chen-West

February 12, 2019

Sending condolences , prayers and love to our cousins (whom we haven’t seen in a long time). We saw Libby Christmas 2010 in Ochie.

Aunt Ship, may the angels accompany you into Paradise!
Rest In Peace.
Say ‘Hi’ to our Aunts and Uncles, especially our Dad - Kenty.

Peace of Christ be with you all,
Joanne, Joseph and Dwight.

Lois Morris

February 9, 2019

Always remember your laugh . It was so contagious. Remember that
Nice Mince dish you used to make . Was the most delicious thing with

Rest In Peace .

To my cousins I wish you peace and comfort at this time. Will keep you all
In my prayers

Lois and family