WARWICK - (July 5, 2012) -  When Ernestine “Erna” Freisinger was born in Vienna, Austria, on July 4, 1912, the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, whose assassination in 1914 is considered the immediate cause of World War I, was the presumptive heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. And people still preferred the horse and carriage over the automobile, communicated by letter or postcard and only traveled long distances by train or ship.

On Wednesday, July 4, Freisinger celebrated her 100th birthday with close members of her family at her residence in Schervier Pavilion, a 120-bed skilled nursing facility on the Warwick Campus of the Bon Secours Charity Health System.

Erna, as she is known to her friends and staff, has lived at Schervier Pavilion since 2003. She emigrated from Austria to the United States when she was 28 years old. Erna has been a resident of Warwick since 1941 and was married to Dr. H.R. Freisinger, now deceased, who practiced medicine in this area. She is also the mother of recently retired Dr. Gerard Freisinger, who also had his practice in Warwick. Erna has two grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

A former member of the Warwick Art League and award-winning artist, Erna Freisinger’s paintings have been shown throughout the region and many are displayed in the homes of local residents. Her artwork was once selected for the cover of the Warwick Valley Telephone Company’s directory.

Freisinger’s 100th birthday wish was for her friends and relatives to enjoy good health. She credits her own longevity to having a loving family as well as the healthcare she receives at Schervier Pavilion.

“The people here are good to me,” she said.

About Bon Secours Charity Health System

Bon Secours Charity Health System comprises Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Suffern, New York, and two community hospitals, Bon Secours Community Hospital in Port Jervis, New York, and St. Anthony Community Hospital in Warwick, New York.

Bon Secours Charity Health System also includes a certified home health agency, two long-term care facilities, an assisted living/adult home facility, and several other off-site medical programs.  

The Health System, which draws its name from its two Catholic sponsors, the Sisters of Bon Secours and the Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth, serves nearly 1 million people. With more than 3,400 employees, the Health System is one of the region’s largest employers. For more information, visit


1.    On Wednesday, July 4, Erna Freisinger celebrated her 100th birthday with close members of her family at her residence in Schervier Pavilion.

From left, great grandsons Matthew and Timothy Mullhaupt, granddaughter Patricia Mullhaupt, Ernestine “Erna” Freisinger and her son Dr. Gerard Freisinger.

Not present for the family photograph: Granddaughter Suzanne Soulé and her three children: Sam, Maggie and Carson.
1A. Dr. Gerard Freisinger helps his mother blow out the candles on her 100th birthday.

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