BREWER - Judith L. Richards Masse, 79, passed away unexpectedly at her home on March 7, 2014. She was born Nov. 2, 1934, in Easton, daughter of Paul and Helena (Boulter) Lawler Mooers.
She graduated from Houlton High School in 1952, and attended Ricker College. In 1955, Judy married John M. Richards from Yarmouth, and they moved to Presque Isle where they had three daughters. In 1966, the family relocated to Brewer, where Judy was active in the Brewer Garden Club, the PTA, and volunteered as a Brownie leader and room mother. When John died suddenly in 1973, Judy was left to raise the three girls on her own. She instilled in them the value of independence and ability to handle life's challenges as well as an appreciation of nature and animals. She worked as a bookkeeper at Lane Construction Company, and then Irving Oil Corporation. On Nov. 2, 1980, she married Kenneth D. Masse of East Vassalboro, where they made their home. In retirement, Judy and Ken traveled extensively throughout the United States and Canada in their motor home, and spent summers at their cottages in Hancock and Sullivan. After Ken died in 1999, Judy moved back to Brewer to be near her daughters. Judy was active in the First United Methodist Church as a greeter, member of the choir, and the Ladies Day Circle. She enjoyed weekly card games with her friends, playing computer games, doing puzzles. Skilled at sewing, knitting and crocheting, Judy made many dresses, sweaters, afghans, doll clothes, and mittens over the years, and had recently been knitting hats for newborns at EMMC. However, she was most famous for her Christmas stockings and made sure all of her girls, grandchildren, great-granddaughter, and even children of family friends had a personalized stocking, which they all treasured, and which will undoubtedly be missed by her yet-to-be-born great-grandchildren.
Judy is survived by her three daughters, Susan Rand and fiancé, Tom Rutherford, of Gig Harbor, Wash., Sharon Moore of Gainesville, Fla., and Marcia Bartol and husband, Jim, of Brewer. She also leaves behind six grandchildren, Mackenzie Rand and husband, Aaron Knoebel, of Bozeman, Mont., Kristina Rand and fiancé, Mason Baker, of Salt Lake City, Randy Moore of Freedom, N.H., Melanie Simmons and husband, Lucas, of Brewer, James Bartol Jr. of New York, N.Y., and Joseph Bartol of Brewer. Judy was thrilled to become a great-grandmother when Lyla Rose Knoebel was born to Mackenzie and Aaron in 2008, and was looking forward to meeting Lyla's new brother, Max who was born in January. Judy is also survived by John's brother Donald Richards, and his sister, Elinor Jones, both of Yarmouth; Ken's children and their families, Matthew and Bobbie Masse of East Vassalboro and Barbara and Bruce Larson of Warren; a sister-in-law, Beverly Lawler of Hawaii; and several nieces, nephews, and cousins. In addition to her husbands, she was predeceased by her parents; a brother, Richard P. Lawler; and her beloved Scottie, Dundee.
Family and friends may visit 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, March 11, at Kiley & Foley Funeral Home, 69 State St., Brewer. A funeral service honoring her life will be held 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 12, at First United Methodist Church, 40 South Main St., Brewer, with the Rev. Harbour Mitchell, presiding. Interment at Woodlawn Cemetery, Brewer, will be in the spring. For those who wish, memorial contributions may be made to First United Methodist Church at the address above. Condolences to her family may be offered at www.kileyandfoley.com.