Obituary: Marie Claire Roy – Lewiston Sun Journal

Marie Claire Roy

SCARBOROUGH – Marie Claire Roy, 56, of Falmouth and formerly of Biddeford and Lewiston passed away peacefully on Jan. 27, 2022, at the Hospice of Southern Maine’s Gosnell Memorial House in Scarborough. with family and friends by her side after a short, grace filled, valiant battle with a very rare, aggressive and incurable cancer.

Born on Dec. 16, 1965, Marie was welcomed into the world as the seventh child of Eugene R. and Madeleine C. (Pare) Roy as well as by the six brothers that preceded her: Michael, Daniel, David, Francis, Dominic and Timothy. She was later joined by two younger brothers, Gregory, and John and a half-sister Leah and a half- brother, Stephen Roy.

Marie attended Holy Cross grammar school where among other things, she was decided to be the first ‘girl’ altar server in Holy Cross parish. Marie graduated from St. Dominic’s High School, class of 1984. While in High School, she became the baby-sitter of choice for many families in her South Lewiston neighborhood. She was a member of the parish’s youth choir,”‘ The Golden Echoes,” and also became involved in a parish program working with children with special needs. That led to her volunteering with the Special Olympics for several years and having life-long relationships with a few of its clients. She also took part in a Clowning and Visitation program where a group of teen-agers would visit and entertain patients in the hospital as well as the elderly in local nursing homes. Marie’s affinity and compassion for the vulnerable of any age and her nurturing nature were manifested from a very early age. For those of us who knew her when, it is no surprise that she became an Occupational Therapist as well as a Social Worker. Her love of animals was evident with every pet our family ever had and there were many over the years: cats, rabbits, ducks, especially Mallards, dogs, chickens, birds, even a pig. Marie nursed many an ailing pet back to health. More recently, over many months and with much patience she became a “’cat whisperer” and earned the trust of several feral cats that frequented her back yard. Patiently, she tamed one enough so that it not only became domesticated and shared Marie’s home, but ‘Nellie’ and Marie grew to love, comfort and trust each other in equal measure. After High school, Marie worked as a teacher’s aide at Fairview school in Auburn and spent one summer as an aide at the University of Maine’s Children Center in Orono. She went on to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from the University of New England in Biddeford graduating in 1990 following her internships in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. Following graduation, she worked at the Mid-Maine Medical Center in Waterville before transferring to the Southern Maine Medical Center in Biddeford. She worked short term at several other venues before finding her niche as a pediatric OT with the Morrison Developmental Center’s pre-school program in Portland where for 11 years she loved working with children with multiple disabilities.

Marie had fallen in love with the area surrounding UNE in Biddeford while she attended college. So much so that shortly after graduation she made her home about a half mile from the campus where she had studied and occasionally worked as a per diem adjunct instructor. She especially enjoyed the accessibility to the ocean and all it had to offer … sea glass, driftwood, seashells, smoothed rocks, beach walks, swimming, and new friends … and she enjoyed them all to the utmost as is evidenced by her accumulation of all the above treasures.

It was while she worked at Southern Maine Medical Center that she met the man she fell in love with, Roger Binette, who also worked at that facility. A typical courtship and relationship ensued for several years. During that time, they became involved with the Maine Ballroom Dancers and became very proficient at it. They loved dancing together. Their dream life together fell apart however when Roger, who she always referred to as a very dear and decent man, died unexpectedly from a pulmonary embolism at the age of 32. It was then that Marie’s whole life took a new direction. She moved from Biddeford to Falmouth, became a first time homeowner and decided to change careers. She pursued a Master of Social Work degree at the University of New England’s Portland campus and graduated in 2008. While there, she volunteered at the Center for Grieving Children in Portland as well as served on the Waban Early Intervention Team for York and Cumberland County.

Shortly after graduation, Marie joined the team of caretakers at the Hospice of Southern Maine in Scarborough. She had been actively working there as a Social Worker for the past 13 years when she was diagnosed with a very rare, aggressive and incurable type of cancer that led to a sudden, unanticipated, early retirement three months ago. Marie had a zest for life in all its aspects as well as a deep love of nature, and a respect for all living creatures. She had an infectious smile, laughed very readily, oftentimes leading to a good, deep belly laugh for herself and whoever she was with. Marie loved organic foods and opted to support farmers markets as much as she could and was a dedicated recycler. She was thoughtful beyond measure and always ready with a helping hand for family members and friends. She loved to play board games with friends and family, was a great cook who readily shared her creations, was a very devoted, loving and thoughtful daughter as well as a loving, compassionate, helpful and fun sibling and friend. She was the aunt with whom nieces and nephews were guaranteed to have memorable adventures. She loved swimming in the ocean, taking walks with a friend catching up on each other’s lives or alone at the Audubon, at Macworth’s Island or just in the neighborhood. A good bowl of popcorn, especially her brother John’s recipe, while snuggling with her cat Nelllie and watching a good movie at home were also some of her favorite things.

Marie was predeceased by grandparents, Ovila and Annette Roy and Cyrille and Aurore Pare as well as her father, Eugene Roy and siblings Michael, Daniel and David Roy; her beloved, Roger; nephews, Adam Roy and Mathew Fitch as well as many aunts, uncles and several cousins ​​and very close friends.

Marie is survived by her mother, Madeleine Roy; siblings: Francis/ Darlene Roy of Poland; Dominic/Juanita Roy of Mechanic Falls; Timothy Roy and companion/ Laurie Goodman of Litchfield; Gregory Roy / Marsha of Wales and John Roy/ Sarah of Portland, Oregon, as well as a half-sister, Leah Hersom, and half-brother, Stephen Roy.

She is fondly remembered by nephews Ben Roy-Davison, Christopher, Isaac, Justin, Joshua, Cody, Samuel, Jack Roy and niece and Godchild, Nicole Roy Ellison , as well as nieces Louise Roy and Kacey Fitch, and her God-child, Marlena Hattem. That she will be missed by many is an understatement as Marie seems to have touched and enriched the lives of so many throughout her life’s journey. She was an inspiration to us, her biological family, as well as to her friends whom she called her “chosen” family. Even more so at the end of her life as she so openly, insightfully, lovingly and gracefully shared her short journey towards death, teaching us to accept adversity, to live in the moment, to live fully and with awareness and a zest for life until the end.

Our family wishes to express deep gratitude to Hospice of Southern Maine, to Marie’s Home Hospice Care Team: Kelly Gillian, Betsy McCarthy, Tracy Laflamme and Angela Lutzenberger as well as the Gosnell House staff who so diligently cared for Marie’s needs during the last few weeks of her illness. Thanks also to Ann, Jan, Charlene and all Marie’s friends, co-workers, former classmates and extended family members and her cohorts in RC, a Social Change community that Marie participated in and contributed to for many years, who walked the cancer journey with her. There are too many of you to mention by name, but you know who you are. THANK YOU! Your overflow of love for Marie was very evident as each of you in turn showered her with caring gestures, food, flowers, attention, cards, texts, encouragement, medical advice, meals for her family and caretakers, companionship, spiritual guidance, prayers, comfort, love and much more during her time of need. We are grateful to all of you. We would be remiss if our family did not give a very special thank you to you, John, for being by Marie’s side from the beginning of her illness till the end, as well as to Sarah, your wife, and your children back home in Oregon for sharing you with us all this time. Your being here and your vigilant support meant the world to Marie and to the family in more ways than we can express.

It is said that at the end of our living, (our death)

Will be to arrive where we first started

And to know the place for the first time.

Marie, now you know the place…Till we meet again Marie. May your beautiful soul soar like the Monarch butterflies that you loved so much as you now experience the final stage of your metamorphosis.

There will be a public celebration of Marie’s life in the spring, details to be announced. Condolences and a video tribute may be accessed online at http://www.albert-burpee.com.

Donations may be made in Marie’s honor to

Hospital of Southern Maine

390 US Route 1,

Scarborough, ME 04074

or The Aphasic Center of Maine,

6027 Village on the Green #130

Carrabassett, ME 04947

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