Police seek tips in nun’s 2006 death

As the St. Martin of Tours community gathered last week for the Sister Paul Mercedes IHM Scholarship basketball fundraising tournament, police officials said they have good tips that could lead them to the individual responsible for the nun’s January 2006 hit-and-run death.

Sgt. Joseph Rossa, of the Accident Investigation Division, is asking people to come forward with the information that will close the case. Anyone with information on the case can call AID at 215–685–3180.

The Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley is offering a $7,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the driver. Call 215–546-TIPS (8477).

Sister Paul Mercedes Perreca entered the convent in 1963 soon after graduating from St. Hubert High School. Among her assignments was at West Philadelphia’s Transfiguration of Our Lord, where she taught a sixth-grader named Michael Nutter.

At the time of her death, Sister Paul was head of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Education Center at St. Martin’s.

On Jan. 9, 2006, she was killed when a red pickup truck hit her as she crossed Cottman Avenue at Hawthorne Street on her way to a morning Mass at St. Matthew. The 61-year-old nun lived at St. Martin’s convent, but spent many nights caring for her mother and stepfather in their Mayfair home.

St. Martin’s established a scholarship fund in her name to honor deserving seventh-grade students and to assist their families in paying their eighth-grade tuition.

The eighth annual basketball tournament took place on April 25. Students played a series of three-on-three half-court games after school.

Money was raised by tournament entry fees, spectator admission and the sale of refreshments.

Anyone wishing to make a donation can send it to St. Martin of Tours School, Sister Paul Mercedes IHM Scholarship, 5450 Roosevelt Blvd., Philadelphia, PA 19124. ••