BWH, the Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center in Foxborough and the Department of Radiology mourn the loss of Karen Carten, RDMS, who passed away on May 22 following a sudden illness. She was 61.
Beloved for her warmth, thoughtfulness and joyful demeanor, Mrs. Carten was an ultrasound sonographer in Radiology and one of the first employees to join the team in Foxborough when the center opened nine years ago. She began her career at the Brigham in 1999 and previously worked at 850 Boylston St.
Cheryl Cullen, RTR, MR, lead radiologic technologist at Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center, said it brightened her day to come in each morning and see Mrs. Carten’s friendly, warm smile.
“She always had a positive attitude — nothing ever brought her down,” Cullen said. “She saw every day as a gift, and that’s how she lived her life. No matter how busy things got at work, she never stopped smiling and enjoyed each day.”
Among their tight-knit team, Mrs. Carten was always the first to organize an outing or event celebrating colleagues’ personal and professional milestones, such baby showers or retirement parties, Cullen said.
“Karen was always looking to do things for other people,” she said. “She was the glue that brought us all together.”
Mrs. Carten was like a mother, sister, guidance counselor and best friend to everyone she met, said Jay Burke, chief radiology technologist at Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center.
“In addition to her professionalism and dedication, she was so full of happiness,” Burke said. “You couldn’t help but feel close to her from the moment you met her.”
This was true of her relationships not only with co-workers but also patients, who adored her and would often request Mrs. Carten by name when scheduling an appointment, Burke added.
“Unlike an X-ray or an MRI, an ultrasound puts you in direct contact with the patient for the duration of the exam,” Burke said. “Karen always took the time to get to know her patients on a personal level and did everything she could to make them feel comfortable. By the time the exam was over, the patient was relaxed and chatting with Karen about family, children, work or whatever else had taken their mind off the illness.”
Julia Raymond, senior operations manager at Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center, described Mrs. Carten as a wonderful, cherished member of the Foxborough family and said she will be deeply missed.
“Those of us who had the honor and great privilege to work with Karen will always remember her as a compassionate and caring professional, mother and wife,” Raymond said. “She was a well respected and valuable member of our team, and we struggle to comprehend this significant loss to our Foxborough family.”
Mrs. Carten is survived by her husband, Christopher, and their children, Ellie and Christopher, as well as a large extended family and many other friends and loved ones.