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Remembrances

Nancy Trowbridge Holmes

Longtime summer resident Nancy Trowbridge Holmes died peacefully on March 20, 2017 in Washington, D.C. She first came to Deer Isle when her parents Sherman and Kitty Trowbridge summered regularly starting in the 1960s. Born on July 25, 1926, in New York City, N.Y., she grew up in Washington, D.C., and graduated from Smith College in 1948. Two years later she married George B. Holmes who had a career in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). As an Agency spouse she moved her family, sometimes on short notice, to and from Brussels, Sweden, Cameroon, London and Malta. In later years she and George traveled extensively.

At Ingleside, her retirement community, she chaired the Decorating Committee, bringing her extensive knowledge of design and color, cultivated during her lifetime interests and worldwide travels. Her other passions included singing, travel, reading, and everything literary. While at Smith she sang with the Smiffenpoofs, and in Washington with the Clef Dwellers, both all female singing groups.

She is survived by her children, Brock Holmes of Silver Spring, Md., Kate Holmes Caldwell of Severna Park, Md. and Sarah Holmes Morris of Bethesda, Md.; as well as grandchildren Alexandra, David, and Meredith Caldwell, and Rose Holmes. Her husband died in 2012. A memorial service was held on April 18 at the Bethlehem Chapel at the Washington National Cathedral. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Washington National Cathedral, 3101 Wisconsin Avenue, Washington, DC 20016 or Doctors Without Borders, 333 7th Avenue, New York, NY 10001.


Solveig Peterson Cox

Longtime Castine summer resident and much-loved ceramic artist Solveig Peterson Cox died peacefully on March 13, 2017 at the age of 86. Solveig, and her late husband Wendell Hayes Cox, lived in Alexandria, Va. They began to visit Castine in the late 1970s and built their summer house overlooking Wadsworth Cove in 1985. Solveig spent her last few years in Northampton, Mass., close to her daughter. A celebration of her life will take place on Thursday, July 6, 2017 at 4 p.m. at the Castine Yacht Club.

Solveig was a founding member of the Torpedo Factory Arts Center in Alexandria and one of the first Hollin Hills Potters. She was an early member of The Kiln Club of Washington, D.C., and served on the Board of Directors of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian.

Born in New York City into a family of artists, Solveig Peterson and her sister Rosamund modeled children’s clothing for their mother, couture designer and fiber artist Mariska Karasz from Hungary. Mariska taught at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in the early years, and her sister, Ilonka Karasz, a graphic and industrial designer, produced cover art for the New Yorker for 25 years.

Fresh and humorous, Solveig’s cat pottery and sculptures found a large audience throughout the Washington area, and her work sold in all 50 states over the course of her career, including shops in Castine, Blue Hill, Deer Isle, and Stonington. Several presidents owned examples of her work; one White House coffee mug featured Socks, the Clinton’s cat. Solveig expanded from pottery to cat-themed furniture, casual clothing, and stationery.

Solveig is survived by her sister, Rosamund Berg Bassett of Connecticut; her son, David M. Cox, and his wife, Carolyn Niblick of California; and her daughter, Jennifer Alden Cox of Amherst, Mass.


Dorothy Mae Buckley

Dorothy Mae Buckley, 83, of Peabody, Massachusetts, died May 10, 2017.

Granddaughter of Albert Waters Richardson of Deer Isle (b. Aug 4, 1882; d. Jan. 5, 1951).

She was the first woman in Peabody to work as a wet wheel operator at the tanneries. Dottie played a mean hand of

Penny-enny, Bingo and Rummy 500. She loved westerns, a good drink of whiskey, collected elephants and will be desperately missed by her bodyguard, fearless and featherless “Gabriel” the parrot.

She is predeceased by her parents Joseph J. Calnan of Wilmington, and Eva M. Gauthier (Richardson) of Peabody, her husband John Buckley; grandson Michael Bik; sisters June Debaredinias and Jean Hatfield; and brother Albert Calman.

She is survived by daughters Louise Melendez (Peabody, Mass.), Eva Barros (Townsend, Mass.), Jeannette Mangold (Peabody, Mass.), April Bik (Peabody, Mass.) and Roxanne Calnan (Peabody, Mass.); sisters Georgianna Caminero (Peabody, Mass.), Lillian McKeon (Williamstown, N.J.), and Sylvia Rodriguez (Woburn, Mass.); by grandchildren: Israel Melendez (Maryland), Georgianna Melendez (Peabody, Mass.), William Melendez (Lynn, Mass.), Stephen Bik (Hillsborough, N.H.), Jonathan Bik (East Boston, Mass.), Brenda Bik (Gloucester, Mass.), Lynda Delano (Danvers, Mass.), Erin Gannon (Lynn, Mass.), Dale Gannon (Peabody, Mass.), Adam Mangold (Peabody, Mass.), April Mangold (Peabody, Mass.), Catherine Mangold (Peabody, Mass.) and Eric Mangold (Peabody, Mass.); and 18 great-grandchildren.


Byron S. Bray

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Byron S. Bray, 90, of Deer Isle, passed away May 6, 2017, at Blue Hill Memorial Hospital, after a brief illness.

Byron was born June 29, 1926, at Deer Isle. He grew up on Deer Isle and graduated from McKinley High School, Class of 1944. Immediately after graduation, he was drafted into the Army where he served in Italy during WWII when he achieved the rank of sargent. Upon an honorable discharge, he returned home where he went to work as a mason. Byron helped build numerous stone fireplaces on the island as well as some on outlying islands. Byron was also employed by numerous carpenters for many years.

Byron was predeceased by his parents Sargent W. and Elizabeth (Gross) Bray; his wife of 37 years Lenora “Lonie” (Eaton); a step-daughter Betsy H. (Bowden) Betts; and one sister Ardelle Barbour. He is survived by one son Russell B. Bray and his wife Carol; two special granddaughters Heather Oliver and Erin Bray; great-granddaughters Lillian Oliver, Josannah and Willow Walker; one sister Edna Gray; and one brother Milton Bray and his wife Marjorie “Muffin”; two grandsons Joshua and Ryan Betts; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Special thanks go to the staff at Island Nursing Home and to Blue Hill Memorial Hospital for the care at the end of Dad’s life.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.


Percy Donald Blaisdell

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Percy Donald Blaisdell, 85, passed away peacefully on January 2, 2017, at Avita of Stroudwater in Westbrook, Maine, following a short period of failing health.

Percy was born on March 6, 1931 in Blue Hill, Maine, to the late William M. and Hazel (Robertson) Blaisdell. He attended George Stevens Academy, where he played varsity baseball and basketball, and was member of their winning Maine State basketball team of 1948. He was also a member of the National Honor Society. Percy graduated from GSA in 1949 and attended Washington State Normal School (now the University of Maine at Machias). While there, he met Virginia (Ginny) May Murphy; they both graduated in 1952 and were married on August 24, 1952. Percy went on to earn both a bachelor’s in and a master’s degree in Education from the University of Southern Maine.

In June of 1953, Percy began his military service in the United States Army. He spent two years at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, with the 511th Signal Company of the 11th Airborne Division.

Percy and Ginny moved first to Eliot, then Kittery, Maine. Percy taught at Laura V. Dame Elementary School in Eliot, Pease Air Force Base Elementary School in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Haven Elementary School in Portsmouth, where he was also the school’s principal. Percy then went to Marshwood Junior High School in South Berwick, Maine, where he taught 8th grade math and was the assistant principal. He also coached basketball and baseball. Percy retired from teaching in 1986. He then worked full time at his summer job with the Maine Publicity Bureau at their information center in Kittery, assisting travelers with directions and insights and also serving as the assistant manager. In connection with this position, he spent several years attending The Eastern States Exposition in Massachusetts, which he thoroughly enjoyed. Percy retired from the MPB in 1998.

Percy was a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Portsmouth, the Portsmouth Yacht Club, Newcastle, New Hampshire, the Southern Maine Fish and Game Club in Kittery, where he taught Hunter Safety courses for many years, and the York County and Maine Retired Teachers Associations.

In 1998, Percy and Ginny moved from Kittery to Ellsworth, Maine to enjoy full retirement. Percy was a member of St. Francis by the Sea Episcopal Church in Blue Hill, Maine, the Blue Hill Historical Society, the Ellsworth and Blue Hill American Legions, the Hancock County Retired Teachers Association, and for many years was a volunteer driver for the Washington Hancock Community Agency.

Percy loved talking to people and lending a helping hand whenever needed. He had a lifelong love of the outdoors, and enjoyed fishing, hunting, boating, camping and gardening, along with woodworking and reading. In his later years, he traveled to Ireland and took a road trip across the United States. Percy was an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox, New England Patriots and the Boston Celtics.

Percy is survived by his daughter, Nanci L. Blaisdell, of New York City, and her partner, Deborah L. Murphy, his brother-in-law, Allen W. Murphy of Mount Desert Island and 13 nieces and nephews. He is pre-deceased by his wife of 49 years, Ginny, and his companions Constance (Connie) Bridges and Katherine (Kathy) Ricker, and by his brother, William E. Blaisdell.

The family would like to thank the staff at Avita of Stroudwater and Compassus Hospice for the excellent care they gave Percy in the last months and days of his life.

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 27, 2017 at St. Francis by the Sea Episcopal Church, Blue Hill, Maine, with the Rev. Claudia Wyatt Smith officiating; a reception will follow. Private interment will be in the Hillside Cemetery, Surry, Maine. In lieu of flowers, friends may make donations in Percy’s memory to St. Francis by the Sea Episcopal Church, P.O. Box 76, Blue Hill, Maine 04614; George Stevens Academy, Development Office, 23 Union Street, Blue Hill, Maine 04614; or to your local hospice or outdoor organization.