Frances Marguerite Atherton (1921 - 2016)

14 entries
  • "We love and miss dear Frances, such a special lady and good..."
    - Jerry Gibbins
  • "What a wonderful woman, artist and friend Frances was. ..."
    - Michel Inaba
  • "I am so sorry for your great loss. May the God who "binds..."
  • "To the family of Ms.Atherton may you find refuge in the God..."
    - T Wilson
  • "I am sorry for your recent loss. Those who die, God keeps..."
    - Susie M
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Frances Jobin Atherton
1921 - 2016
SKOWHEGAN & Waterville - Frances Marguerite Jobin Atherton, born in Lewiston on Jan. 31, 1921, lived much of her life in the Skowhegan/Waterville region. She lived a long and fruitful life and died after an illness on Jan. 15, 2016.
Her career in the medical field spanned over 38 years, and included many years of work at Skowhegan's Fairview Hospital as an anesthesiologist.
She and her family were part of the occupation of Germany after World War II. She also worked at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston (1943-1946), Franklin County Hospital in Farmington, and Thayer and Seton Hospitals in Waterville as an anesthetist. She was also a laboratory technician at Cornell University's Veterinary College from 1947-1948. She and Frances Calder were in nurses training together in the 1940s, and remained best friends over the years.
She is a graduate of Wheaton College (BA degree in studio art and minor in anthropology) and received her certificate to administer anesthesia at Mass General in 1943. She always stressed the value of higher education to anyone who would listen.
In her Waterville high school years, she served as president of her class student council and participated in numerous clubs and sports teams including tennis and figure skating. She was always an avid artist and during her life, managed her own art business (1965-1978), and managed an art gallery at York Beach in 1973. She also taught drawing to the elderly in Mansfield, Mass., in 1977. She won many awards for her art over the years. Upon her return to Maine and Skowhegan from the occupation of Germany, she lived at 9 Bush Street with her family for many years, and then later in Smithfield on North Pond.
She was the daughter of Marion Adele Fairfield Jobin and Henry Francis Jobin. Her sister, Mary Elizabeth (Betty) Poulin and nephew Fred Poulin reside in Portland. Her brother Robert Jobin died in 1989 after a long career in the Marines.
Frances loved her family, spending many years visiting her daughter and son-in-law, Anne and James Dove and grandchildren, Christine, Rebecca, Emily, Philip, and eight great-grandchildren (all living in Alaska), Wilson, Dawson and Carson, Bruce, Avabella and Colby and Kirsty and Calvin. Her grandchildren have many fond memories of the years spent with their grandmother.
Her son, John E. Hawes Jr. (Jay) and daughter-in-law, Claudia, cared for her in her later years. In 2001, Frances moved closer to family in Sacramento, Calif., living just a few blocks from her son at the Einstein Center. In Sacramento, she was surrounded by her grandson, Jeremy Holbrook Hawes and wife, Linda, her granddaughter, Jacqueline and her husband, Vicente Sauceda, as well as great-grandsons, James, Mark, David and Eli (Jeremy's sons) and granddaughter, Olivia (Jacqueline's daughter).
While living at Einstein Center she took part in the writing group and the following poem was one of her many contributions:

Drift along, dream along
On the calm water of the lake.
Feeling happy and gay
On a bright sunny day.
Gliding along, humming a song
Leaving the shore far away.
Dreaming with eyes on
clouds up above
Pine trees around the lake I love.
To float in the boat is such a treat
Birds tweeting and
zooming are so sweet
Drifting in a world of make believe
Imagining things to achieve
Pretending I'm floating to a cloud
A happy loon is hooting so loud
A darning needle zooms
by with no sound
A fish rises out of water,
ripples abound
Slowly sailing into a stream
Cat and nine tails
wiggle like a dream.
Crayfish, turtles, minnow near bottom down deep
The beavers make a dam with straw in a heap
Back on the lake, moving along
To dream new ideas
And make up a song.

Frances lived in our home for the last months, and always had a quick smile and unlimited giggles. She often spoke of her family members in Alaska and Sacramento. Prone to worrying about each one, she learned more and more to take her concerns to her Heavenly Father and Jesus her savior. Sometimes she shared personally meaningful scripture in her letters. Frances loved her family and her friends, which were many. I (Claudia) already miss her and her love. She was more than my mother-in-law. She was my dear friend. I love you, Frances!
A memorial will be held in mid-February at Einstein Center in Sacramento where she lived for so many years. She donated her body to science through the UC Davis School of Medicine.
Here is a link to the slide show that was created for her memorial:

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Published in Central Maine from Jan. 24 to Feb. 1, 2016