InMemoriam_AmyBWH mourns the loss of Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CCU) nurse Amy McDonough Vaughan, RN, who died on March 31 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. She was 41.

Vaughan, of Salem, was a graduate of Nazareth Catholic High School in Wakefield and Northeastern University.

“Amy had friends all over the hospital,” said staff nurse Melanie Nedder, RN, a colleague and close friend. “During her 15 years at the Brigham, she worked on the 14th floor, in the intermediate float pool, on intermediate cardiology stepdown and finally in the CCU. She made friends everywhere she went, with her smile, her  easy laugh and her sense of humor. And her patients loved her just as much as her colleagues.”

After being diagnosed, Vaughan became a strong advocate for pancreatic cancer and spoke at many events, including the Jimmy Fund Telethon.

“Her dedication to advocacy of pancreatic cancer coupled with her effervescent spirit and courage made her an inspiration to many others who are battling the disease,” said Elizabeth Eagan-Bengston, MS, RN, assistant nurse director of Medical Cardiology, who worked closely with Vaughan. “Amy never asked ‘why me?’ Instead she chose to work with the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network to raise awareness of the disease and provide support to others, always maintaining her sense of humor.”

Vaughan loved spending time on the beach and being with her dog, Dutchie.

“Amy was the kind of person who made you feel like you had been friends for decades after just meeting her,” said friend and colleague Christine Cameron, RN. “She was smart, funny and beautiful inside and out.”

She is survived by her husband, Jeffrey Vaughan; mother, Sarah McDonough; mother- and father-in-law, Linda and Bob Vaughan; and many aunts, uncle, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

A funeral was held earlier this week in Stoneham.

Those wishing to honor Vaughan’s memory may do so by making a donation in her name to Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, 1500 Rosecrans Ave., Suite 200, Manhattan Beach, CA 90226, or Care Dimensions, 75 Sylvan Street Suite B-102, Danvers, MA 01923.