- Mildred Gillis Rood, 94, died peacefully November 15, 2016, at home with loving family and friends by her side. Millie was born on September 16, 1922, to John E. Gillis and Eleanor Madeline Page Gillis in Eastport, ME, the fourth of seven children in her family. A self-proclaimed "New England Girl," her heart always belonged to her city by the sea.
When the Great Depression took hold in 1929, Millie stepped into her first caregiver role with her younger brother and sisters while both parents worked tirelessly. She learned to protect them against the challenges associated with growing up poor, even though that was the circumstance faced by most at that time. Determined to succeed in life, she rose to the challenge with the help of dedicated teachers, her beloved Principal and first boss, Brooks Varney, and the Peavey Memorial Library staff who provided a wonderful place to study and dream of a better future. A passionate learner, she graduated from Shead Memorial HS and started working at the age of 15.
The Depression also brought joy into Millie's life when Allen Lumbra joined the NYA recovery program in Quoddy Village. They married in 1940 and raised two girls, Patricia and Sandy, in Vermont and Connecticut. When Al suffered a disabling stroke in 1960, Millie put her keen intellect to work in a number of administrative roles as the family's breadwinner. Al passed away in 1970 and, following her daughter Patricia's death in 1976, Millie raised her two grandchildren, Tracey and Allen, with her second husband, Russell Rood.
Millie's family and friends will also remember her as an avid gardener, music lover, dancer, beachcomber, protector of the environment, and lifelong learner as well as a passionate animal lover who often made friends on walks around Eastport with her beloved rescue dogs, Bandit, Honey, and Mindy.
Millie was predeceased by her two husbands, Allen Lumbra and Russell Rood; daughter, Patricia Lumbra; brothers, Allan, George, and Arnold Gillis and their spouses; brother, Stanley Gillis; and sister, Elizabeth Clukey. She leaves behind her daughter, Sandra Lambert; granddaughter, Tracey Rood; grandson, Allen Rood, along with his wife Audrey and daughter Shannon; sister, Eleanor Fecteau; sister-in-law, Lorraine Gillis; and many special nieces and nephews.
Per her wishes, a noontime service will be held on Monday, November 21st, 2016, at Mays Funeral Home. Flagg Chapel, 72 High St., Eastport, followed by a private graveside service with her family. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to PAWS Brave Hearts, 368 South St., Calais, ME 04619 or Peavey Memorial Library, 26 Water St., Eastport, ME 04631. Condolences and memories may be shared at www.maysfuneralhome.com
Published on  November 21, 2016