Thelma's Story

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ORONO - Thelma Elaine Crossland Robie passed away on August 18, 2015, from complications of a stroke.

Thelma had three loyalties - family, church, and the University of Maine. Family was everything to her. She was the adoring mother of her four favorite sons, as well as a loyal, loving spouse of 66 years to the Reverend Frederick Robie, Jr.

Thelma was born on February 6, 1927, at 148 College Ave, Orono, to Charles and Idella Goodwin Crossland. Growing up in the backyard of the University of Maine, her heart never left those roots. She felt so fortunate to retire to her childhood home. A dedicated mother and minister's wife, she was involved in everything for the boys and church - Scouts, 4-H, Pilgrim Fellowship, and PTA which only scratches the surface of her civic involvement in support of her boys. Thelma passed on her love for the outdoors through numerous family camping trips and outings on the lakes, the mountains, and at the coast of Maine, as well as endless infectious songs from her Camp Natarswi counselor days. Her tireless activities in the church ran the gamut, encompassing everything from womens' groups and youth programs to facilitating meals for the congregation and families in need. Her sincere sweetness would reach out with a kind, inviting, and encouraging word to those new to the neighborhood, those facing challenges, and those needing a friend. Fred often said she did more for the ministry of the church than did he. Thelma's gentle, caring manner endeared her to the members of the three Churches Fred served: Madison, Lincoln and Sanford. She was also irreplaceable at Fred's student churches of Abbot, Blanchard, Greenville and Rockwood.

Graduating from the University with the Class of 1949 with a degree in Home Economics, she stretched every dollar with unparalleled thrift. Always a loving homemaker, she had a perpetual love of cooking, collecting cookbooks, and promoting a whole grain nutritious diet for her family far ahead of its time. Active long after college days with her dear friends in the sorority Alpha Phi Omega and the class of 1949, she facilitated numerous alumni reunions and activities, eventually being honored with the "Golden M Award" and Alumni Association to receive the Block M award.

She is survived by her husband, Rev. Frederick Robie Jr. of Orono; son, Charles 'Fred' Robie and wife, Cathy of Freeport, son, Paul Robie and spouse, Karen Young of Northport, son, Bruce Robie and wife, Katherine of East Holden, son, Glenn Robie and wife, Beth of Kennebunk; and grandchildren, Nick, Becca, Ben, Grace, Carlton, and Forrest Robie.

She was predeceased by her parents, Charles and Idella Crossland; and her three brothers, Carlton, Donald, and Elton Crossland.

Her memorial service will be held on Saturday August 22 at 10am at the Church of Universal Fellowship, Main Street, Orono where she was one of the last surviving members of the founding families of the church. Those who wish may join a Sing prior to the service. Reverend Lornagrace Grenfell of the Church of Universal Fellowship and Reverend Dr. James Haddix of All Soul's Church, Bangor will be officiating.

Those who wish to remember her are welcome to contribute to the Fred and Thelma Robie Scholarship at the University of Maine Foundation, to the Parker Dining Room, Orono, Maine or to the Church of Universal Fellowship, Orono, Maine.
Published on  August 20, 2015
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