Obituary: Vivienne Dombrowski


Dorine Vivienne Dombrowski passed away on Friday, May 31, 2019 surrounded by her family. She was 84 years old. Born on Sept. 7, 1934 in Senghenydd, Wales, to the late Cromwell Polson and Dorine Foxhall Polson, Vivienne (“Viv”) grew up in Bognor Regis, England.

She attended Chichester High School for Girls and went on to train in Nursing and Midwifery at Middlesex University in London. Viv met her husband, Stanley Dombrowski, during her time as a nurse in London. She came to the United States upon marrying Stanley in 1959, and they settled in Export, Pa. She practiced nursing for over thirty years, most of which at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center-Presbyterian Hospital. Viv retired from nursing in 1994, and moved to Edgehill in Stamford, CT in 2000. She became an American in 2002, and lived at Edgehill until she passed.

Viv will be remembered for her kind, gentle, and endearing spirit. A voracious reader, Viv devoured books, from Agatha Christie to Shakespeare, and imparted her love of reading to her three children from a young age by reading them stories from her own upbringing in the UK. She was a trained pianist with a deep knowledge of classical music, and particularly loved opera – she knew many of her favorite arias by heart. Viv was always quick to laugh, and was known for her self-deprecatory humor. She shared her boundless love and generosity with everyone she met.

Vivienne was predeceased by her husband in 1994. She is survived by her brother, Dr. Alan Polson and his wife, Dr. Anne Polson of Blue Bell, Pa.; her children and their spouses, Dr. Jan Dombrowski and Kathy Knox Dombrowski of Honeoye Falls, N.Y., Nadia Dombrowski and Harry Carrel of Cos Cob, CT, and Stefan Dombrowski and Anke Kramer of Glen Ridge, N.J.; nephew Glyn Polson and his wife, Kathleen Phelps Polson of Boston, Mass.; eight grandchildren, Christina, Aleksander, Lydia, Alina, Pascale, Katya, Natasha, and Sonya; and three grandnieces, Ayla, Eliza, and Kate.

Calling hours will be held on Monday, June 3 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Leo P. Gallagher Funeral Home, 31 Arch St. A funeral mass will be held on Tuesday, June 4 at 10 a.m. at St. Michael the Archangel Church, 469 North St. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Medecins Sans Frontieres, in honor of Vivienne’s decades-long practice as a nurse and commitment to caring for others.

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