Deborah Jean O'Connor

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    - Linda Nickerson
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AUGUSTA -- Deborah Jean O'Connor, 56, of Augusta died at home on Monday, June 27, 2011, after a six-year battle with breast cancer with her husband and family at her side.

She was born in Gardiner on Oct. 22, 1954, the first child of Norman and Vicki Grenier.

A graduate of Cony High School, class of 1973, she loved high school and working on costumes for Chizzle Wizzle. She worked at HealthTex and for the State of Maine Department of Labor, where she worked until she retired in 2009. She loved her work and remained friends with all her co-workers over the years.

For Debbie and Bill's first date, they went to a movie "Gorillas in the Mist." She loved to tell the story that she and Bill were the only people in the theater and she thought that he had paid to rent out the theater to be alone with her. Deborah married her soulmate, William, on April 28, 1990.

Debbie loved making quilts and loved giving away the quilts more so she could see the joy that she brought to everyone she gave them to. Everyone who knows Debbie knows that she loved scratch tickets. She would go to Dead River several times a day when she was winning to redeem them and get more hoping one day to get that big prize.

She also enjoyed going to Foxwoods and Bangor Slots. Bingo, NASCAR and Jeff Gordon were also some of her favorite pastimes. She loved shopping and kept Kohl's in business. She also had a huge collection of teddy bears and anything with a pink ribbon. She loved animals, especially labs.

She was survived by her husband of 21 years, William O'Connor; her mother, Vicki Grenier; brother Timothy Grenier; and nephew Aaron and wife Jessica; and nephews Andrew, and Timothy Grenier Jr.; sister and brother-in-law Alice and David Ostertag; special nieces and spouses Stacey and Shane Beckim and great-nephew Devin and most favorite great-niece Kalee Rae; Stephanie Crochere and Derek Trudeau and their children Stephen, Jared, Caleb and Caitlyn; Steven Crochere; Nicole and Rob Schneider and the girls Rebecca, Elizabeth and Kathryn. She will be sadly missed by her fur kids, Henry and Lady.

She was also survived by her brother-in-law, John Dingus, wife Sally, sons John Jr., Billy, James and Jesse Dingus, and their families including great-nephew Dominic; brother-in-law Patrick O'Connor; brother-in-law Ricky O'Connor; sisters-in-law Roxanne, Tammy and Brenda, and Brenda's sons Wayne and Kenny Lathrop and wife Donna and their families; and special friends Wayne and Cindy Sirois and their daughter, Octavia.

Debbie was also survived by many aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews; special friends Jeriann and Bill Tims, and lifelong friend Linda Ganzha. Special thanks to neighbors and friends Earl and Shirley Blanchard for all your help over the years ... It would be absolutely impossible to list every person who was special to Debbie.

She was predeceased by her stepson, Ian O'Connor; her mother-in-law, Shirley Neptune Piper; her special aunt, Charlotte MacPhelemy; her father, Norman Grenier; and her nephew, a special angel, Dominic Andrews. Special thanks to Dr. Andrew Hertler and the entire staff of the Harold Alfond Cancer Center. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Harold Alfond Cancer Center.

Celebration of Debbie's life will take place on July 7, 2011, at the Manchester Lions Club at 4 p.m. Please bring a dish to share with family and friends in celebration of her life.

Published in Central Maine on July 1, 2011