Nancy Sprague Brigham passed away quietly in Morristown Medical Center on July 21, 2021 from a heart related illness. She was 99 years old and had been a resident of Chatham, New Jersey for 68 years.
Born on April 15, 1922 in Jersey City, New Jersey, Nancy was the daughter of Edwin L. Sprague Jr. and Ethel E. Sprague of Maplewood, NJ. When Nancy was a young child, her family moved to Waben, Massachusetts, a village in the city of Newton. She graduated from Newton High School in 1940 and attended Mount Ida Junior College. During World War ll, she worked as a Time Study/Methods Engineer for Raytheon. In 1947, she married Robert C. Brigham of South Harwich, Massachusetts. They divorced in 1960. They moved to Chatham Township in 1953 where Nancy became the Secretary of the Board of Health (1960s) and Municipal Court Clerk (1960 – 1969). In 1955, she moved to Chatham Borough and took a position with The Seamen’s Bank for Savings at 30 Wall St. in New York where she worked for 22 years. Nancy retired from Seamen’s in 1989 as VP in Charge of the Mortgage Servicing Department & Insurance Department. While at Seamen’s, she was a member of the National Association of Bank Women and The Savings Bank Women of New York. She also served as a member of the Chatham Trust Advisory Board from 1976 – 1986.
Throughout her life Nancy loved travelling, and enjoyed taking repeated trips to Europe and elsewhere with her dear friend and cousin, Betsy Murphy Sparrow. Nancy had a tireless, seemingly inexhaustible enthusiasm for life and living it at its fullest. She always walked with intense purpose, her stride revealing strong determination and a pace which earned her the moniker “Hurricane.” Even at the advanced age of eighty-two, she toured China with her son Chris and his family and walked the Great Wall. Her indefatigable loving spirit drove her to always live with divine purpose and intent, an excellent example and inspiration to all who were blessed and lucky enough to have known her. Nancy also possessed a razor-sharp memory, keen intellect and wit, and the amazing ability to discuss practically any relevant topic existing in the news on any given day. These remarkable skills never waned with time. Timelessly graceful in both words and actions, always impeccably dressed, Nancy was elegance exemplified.
Nancy attended mass daily when she was able and for years, she was an active participant with Eva’s Kitchen. She had been a member of St. Patrick’s Church in Chatham since 1955 and served two terms on the Parish Council Finance Committee from 1980 – 1985 and 1993 – 1999.
Nancy was deeply devoted to her four grandchildren. With great love and enthusiasm, she supported all their endeavors. Her special bond with her grandchildren is a gift each of them will treasure.
Nancy is survived by her son Robert S. Brigham and his wife Nancy of Basking Ridge, NJ; Christopher K. Brigham and his wife Wendy Walker of Roxbury CT; daughter-in-law Linda Brigham of Branchville, NJ and grandchildren Luke, Riley, Eve and Brice Brigham. She is predeceased in death by her son Mark L. Brigham and her very special friend C. Armond ‘Swede’ Johnson of Madison NJ.
A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, July 31, 2021, at 12:30 pm at St. Patrick’s Church, 85 Washington Ave., corner of Chatham Street, Chatham, N.J.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to any of the following charities:
Catholic Charities, https://www.catholiccharitiesusa.org,
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, https://www.stjude.org,
Franciscan BreadlineFor The Poor, https://stfrancisbreadline.org/