Old Saybrook- Flavie "Flavia" Crotty Adams, 87, of Old Saybrook, CT, daughter of Edward and Odelie (Brochu) Crotty, and widow of Richmond Adams, died Monday, October 14, 2013, after a short illness.
She leaves behind her beloved children Maureen McPherson and her husband John of Derry, NH, Patricia Adams of Plainville, CT, and Brian Adams and his wife Linda of White Bear Lake, MN, as well as her beloved grandchildren, Meghan and Kevin McPherson, Amanda and Adam Fredrickson, Thomas Pannone, Christopher and Bryce Adams.
"Mimi" loved her faith, family and friends, as well as gardening and needlecrafts.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday October 18th at 11am in St. John Church, 161 Main St., Old Saybrook. Burial will be in Holy Rosary Cemetery, Rochester, NH, at a later date. Donations in her memory may be made to the Shoreline Soup Kitchens and Pantries, PO Box 804, Essex, CT 06426. To sign the on line guest book visit www.swanfuneralhomeoldsaybrook.com.
Flavie "Mimi", "Flavia" Crotty Adams Eulogy
Flavia was born in Rochester, New Hampshire, the only child of older parents. She was born prematurely at a time when only the strong survived, and survive she did…a long and full life. She was raised in the beautiful seaside town of Ogunquit, Maine, where her father was the town Barber who told all the grandchildren he cut Santa Clause's hair. Her mother ran a rooming house for summer tourists. Flavia helped her mother with the work while at the same time providing her children with many summers of beaching, and wintry holidays of skating on local ponds. In those days it was a 9 hr trip from Wethersfield to Ogunquit, but as a faithful daughter she packed up her family every month and every holiday to visit her parents. Over the years, she shared her love of Maine with her children and grandchildren.
Flavia's first language was French which she spoke until she entered first grade. She and her mother, also known as "Mimi", kept birthday and family secrets from the children by speaking French. Years later, Flavia used her French in her travels across Europe where she loved to speak to local residents about their daily lives. Flavia's French and Irish family background also gave her strong roots of faith and history that she passed on to her family. She told many stories about the Depression when she would help her mother can foods and sew clothing her father distributed discretely to needy families. She taught her family important lessons of charity, frugality, a strong work ethic, trustworthiness, a stoic attitude, tolerance and daily prayer in times of both adversity and prosperity. She prayed for her family's protection often with her Rosary or special prayers for Saint Jude. She used to joke that St. Jude must be thinking, "It's her again!" She was full of great advice, like "Take care of your house and it will take care of you" and "waste not, want not."
During WWII, Flavia married Richmond Adams while he was home on leave from the Navy before being shipped overseas to England. She and her mother sent him fruitcakes soaked with rum and other goodies each sent with a prayer that he would return safely. During the war, she worked in the Portsmouth, NH Navy Yard as a secretary. She supported her husband's decision to take advantage of the GI bill to attend prep school and then the engineering program at the University of New Hampshire, often sacrificing her own needs to enable his attainment of his degree. She was a young mother, having her first child while her husband was still in college. She faced adversity with a "we will move on" attitude, uncomplaining. She would have liked to have been a nurse, but it was not to be. She had responsibilities and had to go to work immediately after graduating early from high school.
Flavia often told the story of typing over 100 job applications for her husband, with only two responses. She and Richmond moved to CT for the job offer at Pratt and Whitney, settling in Wethersfield where they raised their children, Maureen, Patricia, and Brian. Like many women of her generation, she was an at-home mother who was always there after school with homemade cookies, a sympathetic ear and an ability to handle all kinds of homework issues. She valued education, and was a strong advocate for her children when school issues arose. She was the "taxi" to take her three children to sports, music lessons, and special events. While her husband worked long hours, Flavia ran a well organized home. She cooked healthy meals, managed a frugal budget, sewed expertly, and volunteered in the schools and scouts for many years to help her children and make lifelong friends. She loved flower and vegetable gardening, and was very proud of her graduation from the Master Gardeners program at the UCONN Extension where she volunteered for years. She loved knitting and quilting, saying that the more complicated the patterns, the better she liked them.
Flavia and Rich were drawn to the town of Old Saybrook upon retirement because it reminded them of their childhood home in Maine. Flavia quickly became involved in local groups including volunteering to help at the Hart House's "Bottoms Up" Garden Club, the Senior Center's Needlecrafter's group, the Redhats, line dancing and library book club as well as other groups. Flavia was a voracious reader throughout her life, gaining wisdom about many topics. She was a "snowbird" for many years, wintering in Florida where she provided many a winter respite for her family.
Most of all she enjoyed the friendships she made over the years. She especially enjoyed the Saturday evening Vigil mass here at St John, sitting in the midst of her friends.
Flavia loved her children and grandchildren unconditionally and followed each of their lives closely with great interest. She researched the family genealogy for years and passed along her knowledge to the younger generations. To her two granddaughters and four grandsons, she was their "Mimi", always making tasty pies and cookies. One of her granddaughters found a very appropriate wall plaque that Flavia hung proudly in her kitchen that says "When all else fails, ask Mimi! " Over the years she had a number of dogs from whom she gained much enjoyment and love, especially Cindy the dachshund..
Her grandkids nicknamed her "Cyber -Mimi" because she has always been computer- savvy, emailing and skyping family and friends near and far as recently as a few weeks ago.
Flavia faced her recent illness bravely based on her strong faith with the same decisiveness and no-nonsense approach that she showed all her life. She knew from caring for her mother, who had a similar type of cancer, that she did not want life-prolonging treatment at the expense of quality of life. She wanted her final days to be on her terms with hospice care and she wished to remain in her own home as long as possible. She dictated her own obituary, wanting it to be brief and to the point, and she rushed to get all her affairs in order to minimize any anxiety for her family. Feisty and direct until her last days, she joked with family and told her good friends how much she loved them and cherished their friendship.
The family would like to express its appreciation for all the kindness and support of her friends in the Old Saybrook area especially over the last few weeks.