BEALS - On Aug. 25, 1930, a baby girl by the name of Leta Fae was born into a family of five siblings, Marguerite, Frederick Gladstone, Lorna Eileen, Gracia Wilma and Ruth Verlyn, and to parents Chester and Delcena Lenfestey. On Nov. 14, 2012, after living a good and long life, Leta Fae Beal passed peacefully.
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Within 16 months of her birth, Leta's father died as a result of an unfortunate accident sustained while serving in the U.S. Coast Guard, leaving her mother to be the sole care provider for the family. During those years, Delcena's children witnessed hard work, perseverance, a sense of humor and an unfailing faith in God, traits that followed each one as they found their own place in the world. At 16 Leta graduated from Beals High School as valedictorian of her class. Meanwhile in Rockland, a young man by the name of Earlon Beal in leafing through the Beals High School yearbook - the Ocean Breeze - caught sight of Leta Fae's graduation picture and knew in that instant that she was the one he was going to marry. And that's exactly what happened. On July 26, 1947, they were wed. This marriage bore them two children, Lowell Edward "Don" and Terry Luan, who in turn bore them grandchildren, Sarah Jean and Rachel Elizabeth Beal and Jared Beal Fagonde, who in turn bore them great-grandchildren, Leah Day and Connor Atwood Burtchell and Jonah Earlon and Judah Beal Fagonde. As a young woman, Leta worked as a telephone operator, worked in the fish factory, and made and sold doughnuts at a local grocery store. She served the town of Beals as tax collector, planning board member and appointed as registrar after her mother stepped down, and which appointment in turn was given to her daughter, Terry, when she stepped down. She was women's leader, Sunday school teacher and served as a deacon in her beloved church, Community of Christ. But what was most important in her life, other than God, the thing that brought her the most joy was her role as homemaker for her husband, mother to her children and grandmother to her grandchildren. Nothing made her happier than putting delicious meals on the table, making sure that all the clothes were clean and mended, keeping a very clean and tidy house, and attending as many functions that she could that her family was involved in. Her family was her life, all you have to do is walk through her house and see all the pictures displayed on the walls to know what meant the most to her. She also loved doing things for others. If anyone - family, friends and sometimes, even strangers - needed something, she would drop whatever she was doing and be off and running to do what she could.
All of us who were a part of her life will miss her greatly. Rest in peace. A special thank you to all who took such gentle, loving care of Leta. Your diligent service allowed her to spend her remaining days with me in our home. My appreciation cannot be measured. - Earlon
A memorial service for Leta will be held 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 25, at Beals Community of Christ. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that donations be made to Beals Community of Christ, P.O. Box 269, Beals, ME 04611, to go towards the new hymnals. Thank you.
Published in BDN Maine from Nov. 16 to Nov. 20, 2012