Barbara Ruth DeWaters, 92, passed away after a brief illness on Wednesday, August 13, 2014. Barbara was born in Portland on March 31, 1922 to Carlton W. and Shirley Merrill Baldwin. She attended Portland schools and graduated from Deering High School in 1939. After graduation she attended the Northeastern Business College. Barbara was employed at Portland City Accounting Department, and then at the former Sacony Vacuum Oil Company. Barbara Married Frederick J. DeWaters in Portland on May 4, 1945. After a few brief years in Virginia Beach, Virginia and Towsend, Maryland they returned to raise their family in Portland, spending summers at...
Barbara Ruth DeWaters, 92, passed away after a brief illness on Wednesday, August 13, 2014. Barbara was born in Portland on March 31, 1922 to Carlton W. and Shirley Merrill Baldwin. She attended Portland schools and graduated from Deering High School in 1939. After graduation she attended the Northeastern Business College. Barbara was employed at Portland City Accounting Department, and then at the former Sacony Vacuum Oil Company.
Barbara Married Frederick J. DeWaters in Portland on May 4, 1945. After a few brief years in Virginia Beach, Virginia and Towsend, Maryland they returned to raise their family in Portland, spending summers at Highland Lake and later, during their post-retirement years, wintering on Florida's gulf coast.
Barbara managed the books of her husband's plumbing and heating business and was an active volunteer and community member her entire life. She served as treasurer of the Lincoln Junior High PTA, den mother/troop leader for the Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts and Campfire Girls, treasurer of the Women's Auxiliary to the Maine State Association of Plumbing Contractors, secretary for the Beta Sigma Phi International Sorority, and was a member of the Lions and North Deering Community Clubs. She was a founding member of the Women of Windward (Florida) and the Merry Widows Golf Group. She also volunteered as a reading tutor for elementary school children in Florida, and up until her illness she was treasurer of the Woodfords Women's Club and called Bingo every Friday at the Woods at Canco.
Barbara is survived by her five children, Rick DeWaters (daughter-in-law Lisa) of Lockport, NY; Barbara Leighton of Westbrook; Jere DeWaters (daughter-in-law Elise Scala) of Portland; Julie Duffy of Westbrook; and Jan DeWaters (son-in-law Stefan Grimberg) of Potsdam, NY; as well as 14 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her brother Carlton (Bud) Baldwin, Jr. (sister-in-law Dolly) of Portland. In addition to her parents, Barbara was predeceased by her Uncle Adelbert and Aunt Florence Merrill and her beloved husband of 53 years, Frederick.
Barbara was an avid reader her entire life, spending many summer days on the dock at Highland Lake working through her weekly stack of library books. She and Fred were members of the Italian American (now Italian Heritage) and Elk's Clubs, where they enjoyed partying with good friends. She was a talented homemaker, seamstress, and cook, and over the years her home was a happy gathering place for family and friends. She enjoyed golf card games but most of all she enjoyed spending time with her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Barbara touched the lives of many, making friends easily with her warm, engaging smile and generous grace that made everyone feel at home. She was always there for a hug and comforting words, and never 'made a fuss' no matter what life presented to her. She was of the pragmatic generation that didn't complain but adapted, evolved, and embraced life as it unfolded. She was boastful only of her family, and spoke of her children as a gem with multiple facets that each shone light in a particular way, and she had the remarkable ability to hold a unique, special relationship with each of them. She will be remembered by those who knew her, even toward the end of her life, for her remarkable sense of independence and quiet self-assurance.
In April of this year Barbara was diagnosed with end-stage cancer. Her five children drew near and cared for her throughout her illness, with the help of other caregivers and hospice. This past summer was a precious time spent on the front porch of camp, reminiscing, reassuring, and deepening the love she had for all who knew her… Barbara spent the last days of her life in her home on Highland Lake, where she was able to feel the lake air, hear the birds, and – what she loved best – listen to the commotion of everyday life with her large family under one roof.
The family would like to thank the wonderfully compassionate and competent staff at Hospice of Southern Maine for their caring support through the final months of Barbara's life. A memorial service will be held at 2:00 PM on Sunday, August 31, 2014 at Jones, Rich & Hutchins Funeral Home, 199 Woodford Street, Portland. Private burial will be in Pine Grove Cemetery.
Please visit www.jonesrichandhutchins.com
for additional information and to sign Barbara's online guest book.
Donations can be made in lieu of flowers to:
Hospice of Southern Maine
180 US Route 1, #1
Scarborough, Maine 04074http://www.hospiceofsouthernmaine.org/