Mary's Story

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BLUE HILL - Mary Hardenbergh Dethier 'Maisie,' died Dec. 16, 2014, two weeks after suffering a debilitating stroke.

Maisie loved her family, the outdoors, birds, mountains, a vast network of friends, skiing, hiking, tennis, singing, picking blueberries and making them into incomparable muffins and pies, sewing, knitting, gardening and every aspect of life. She was born in Kansas City, Mo., Sept. 9, 1921, the daughter of Clarence Morgan Hardenbergh and Margaret Baxter Nichols Hardenbergh, and she graduated from Northrup School, Minneapolis, in 1939 and Bryn Mawr College in 1943.

She is survived by her husband of 66 years, Charles; children, David, Brock, Megan and Deborah; children-in-law, Nancy Nylen, Melody Graulich and David Duggins; and grandchildren, Evan Dethier, Dylan Dethier, Corey Dethier, Larkin Dethier, Peter Duggins, Andrew Rockenbaugh and Julie Rockenbaugh.

Because their mothers were best friends, Maisie and Charlie knew each other as kids, dated when she was an undergraduate at Bryn Mawr and he was teaching at nearby Haverford School, and married in 1948. They retired in 1982 and in 1992 moved permanently to Maine, where they spent their winters in the Parker Ridge retirement community and their summers in the Dethier family house in East Blue Hill.

An accomplished writer, historian and organizer, Maisie spent her life giving to others, making a career of working, sometimes with pay, sometimes without, for organizations dedicated to good causes - the U.S. Departments of Commerce and State during the Second World War, the New York and Pennsylvania Leagues of Women Voters, the East Blue Hill Village Improvement Society, the First Congregational Church of Blue Hill, which she served for a time as clerk and Bryn Mawr College. She could find the good in any situation or any person and kept those around her smiling by singing snippets from old songs or organizing games of Dumb Crambo or Mah Jongg. She lived an exemplary life and died beloved by all who knew her.

In lieu of flowers, friends are urged to contribute to their favorite educational, environmental or medical charity.
Published on  December 19, 2014
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