AUGUSTA - Robert Coolidge Boothby, 84, of Wayne, passed away peacefully on March 26, 2014, at MaineGeneral Rehabilitation and Nursing Care at Gray Birch in Augusta.
Bob was born Aug. 26, 1929, in the farmhouse of the Century Elm Farm, on Boothby Road in Livermore, son of the late Leslie and Thelma Boothby. In the fall of 1945 he met his future wife, Betty Johnson, at the Farmington Fair. He graduated from Leavitt Institute in Turner in 1947 as valedictorian of his class. He continued his education at the University of Maine at Orono.
Bob and Betty married in July 1950. A year later, Bob graduated with a bachelor's degree in engineering, and immediately after graduation Bob and Betty moved to Schenectady, N.Y., where they started a family and he began his career at General Electric. Their four children - Peter, Patricia, Robert, and David - were born there. In 1958, they moved to Pittsfield, Mass., and then in 1965, they moved to Acton, Mass. While living in Acton, Bob worked in the Aerospace Industry, at Northrop, Raytheon, and several other companies, and earned a master's of business administration from Northeastern University. During that time Bob traveled frequently to Los Angeles on business trips, regaling his family with stories about his travels there. Fulfilling Bob's desire to be closer to his family, Bob and Betty moved to Wayne, where they have participated actively in the life of the Wayne Community Church and local bridge clubs for the past 20 years.
Bob loved spending time with his family and led them on many excursions - hiking, camping, and skiing in the Northeast. He was an avid reader of American history especially that of the Civil War period, which inspired many family trips that featured visits to historical sites from Canada to Virginia. His sense of adventure led the whole family on a cross-country road trip of exploration and discovery, to the delight of his children. Bob was a lifelong gardener, growing vegetables, fruits and flowers. He loved playing bridge, square dancing, reading, and storytelling. After his 2013 diagnosis with nonsmokers lung cancer, Bob fought valiantly, with his signature optimism and determination ever present.
Bob will be greatly missed and remembered as a loving husband and father. His energy, optimism, curiosity, and quiet, gentle intelligence will remain in our hearts forever.
Bob is survived by his wife, Betty; his four children, Peter, of Livermore, Patricia (David) Melchert, of Mill Valley, Calif., Robert (Kathryn Davis), of Chelsea, and David (Patrice), of Nashua, N.H.; 12 grandchildren and stepgrandchildren; five great-grandchildren; and his sister-in-law Norma Boothby, of Livermore.
He was predeceased by his sisters Louise Berry, formerly of Island Falls, and Edith Damon, formerly of Turner, and his brother Leslie, formerly of Livermore.
His family would like to thank MaineGeneral Rehabilitation and Nursing Care at Gray Birch and MaineGeneral Hospice for the care that Bob received, which was wonderfully kind and comforting for him and his family. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 13, at the Wayne Community Church, 30 Old Winthrop Road, Wayne. Interment will be at Lakeside Cemetery, Federal Road, Livermore.
In lieu of flowers, if desired contributions may be made to the Wayne Community Church, P.O. Box 300, Wayne, ME 04284, or to the Cary Memorial Library, P.O. Box 127, Wayne, ME 04284. Arrangements by the Finley Funeral Home, 15 Church Street, Livermore Falls. Messages of condolence may be sent to: www.finleyfuneralhome.com