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Then and Now

Sister Diann Cousino

Diann Theresa Cousino was born on Nov. 12, 1941. She was the oldest of 10 children of Bernard A. Cousino and Beatrice Barton. Their first home was in the village of South Rockwood.

Her ancestral families, French settlers, embraced the values of their Catholic faith and education. Diann’s early childhood was spent on the farm, learning skills from her mother and grandmother to create a home with family and friends, sewing, canning, cooking and growing vegetables. Diann was quilting by age 10 and playing piano recitals with her sister, Barbara.

She faced a cultural shock in the summer of 1953 when the family moved to Dearborn. Although everything was unfamiliar for a while, the move gained them a larger home, a better job for her father and exposure to IHM teachers. While a senior in high school, Diann was approached by Sister Alice Mary Diehl who asked her if she ever thought about becoming a sister. After prayer, conversations and discernment, Diann knew she wanted to become an IHM.

Diann entered the IHM community on Sept. 6, 1959. Although teaching was not the primary draw to joining the IHMs, she realized that she had a natural ability to teach because she was the oldest of 10 children who became her students. Her assignment at St. Francis de Sales School, Detroit, as a first-grade teacher felt comfortable, like she was “falling into a groove.”  

One of her favorite teaching missions was Gesu School, Detroit, where nothing but the best could be had for the students. Diann also was involved in Talent’s Unlimited, the Ungraded Primary, the Workshop Way, the British Primary, the Pilot Program for SWRL (an Art Program). Diann continued her own education, earning two master’s degrees—in special education and administration.

In 2006, she began a new position of IHM Archives assistant. In this position, she is able to pursue research into IHM history. In doing research on her family genealogy, Diann has found 45 women who are IHM-Cousino relatives!

Diann is very grateful for her presence in the IHM community, where her faith, rooted in Jesus and the Gospels, continues to deepen. Diann says, “It is a blessing to be an IHM Sister. I am proud to be a member of a group of women who have embraced the liberating mission of Jesus. I pray that it may always be so.”

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