SCARBOROUGH - Pauline E. Michaud, of Scottow Way, died Sunday, March 13, 2016, at Gosnell Memorial Hospice House, surrounded by her family.
She was born Esther Pauline Heskett, April 27, 1933, to John R. and Jessie (MacLeod) Heskett in Augusta. Pauline grew up in Brownville and graduated as valedictorian from Brownville Junction High School in 1950. She then worked in the office at the J. Lewis Mill in Brownville.
She married Andrew A. Michaud on Feb. 16, 1952, at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Brownville Junction. The family moved from Brownville Junction to South Portland in 1960, to Portland in 1975, and to Scarborough in 1989. Their children, Joe, Anne, Denise, Paula, Jayne and John, were born 1953-1963, and Andrea in 1973.
Pauline's Roman Catholic faith, to which she converted in 1951, was deeply important in her life. Drawing on her faith, Pauline devoted her life to social justice, women's and children's rights and welfare, and human rights efforts in Maine and across the world, generously volunteering her time to many organizations. In Brownville Junction, she was a member of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church and a member of its Sodality. While living in South Portland, she was an active member of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church. In Portland, she was a member of Sacred Heart Church and its branches of C.A.P. and Catholic Daughters of the Americas. In Scarborough, she was an active member of St. Maximilian Kolbe Church, served on outreach to nursing homes, and led prayer and Bible-study groups. As leader of St. Max's Social Justice and Peace Commission, Pauline founded Clean Clothes Campaign of Southern Maine, affiliated with the SweatFree Communities of Bangor, working against sweatshop clothing manufacturers.
Pauline worked in Hannaford Brothers corporate offices, starting in the mid-1960s as a secretary, and soon was selected for training in computer programming, becoming one of the first female computer programmers in the industry. She eventually was promoted to Programmer Analyst, a role at which she was inherently gifted. She was proud to have arranged a visit to Maine with Grace Brewster Murray Hopper, computer pioneer. Pauline retired in 1992 after more than 25 years of service.
Pauline adored beauty and knowledge, and she often spent time reading poetry and biographies of historical innovators and artists; gardening; enjoying Pine Point beach with their dog Suzi and family; oil painting, which she began in her late 70s; traveling to Canada, Europe, Japan, and Mexico; and listening to Andrew play Dixieland piano during her beloved boisterous family gatherings. She loved studying historical maps and volunteered for several years at the Osher Map Library.
She researched and created a detailed genealogy of both sides of the family, tracing the Michaud side back to 1610 in France and the Heskett side to 1743 in Scotland, and she traveled to both countries as part of her research.
Pauline is survived by her husband, Andrew; seven children, Joe of Cumberland (and wife, Jamie); Anne Jess of Seattle (and husband, Howard); Denise Michaud of San Mateo, CA; Paula Michaud of Scarborough (and husband, Jay Stevenson); Jayne Michaud of Arlington, VA; John of Old Orchard Beach (and wife, Didi Reisky), and Andrea "Drea" Michaud of South Portland (and partner, David Siegfried). She is also survived by six grandchildren, Alex Michaud of Seattle, Kate Michaud of Portland, Becky Mann of Seattle (and husband, Casey), Levi Jess of Portland, OR, Mike Jess of Bellingham, WA, and Matt Paquin of Scarborough; and one great-granddaughter, Luna Jess of Olympia, WA.
Pauline was preceded in death by her brother, Robert Heskett. She is survived by her sisters, Mary Thomas of Kittery Point, Shirley Caron of Brewer, Geraldine Grenier of Las Vegas; and brother, Gerald Heskett of Palmyra.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11AM on Monday, March 21, 2016, at St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish, 150 Black Point Rd., Scarborough. A reception will follow in the church hall. Burial will be private.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Conroy-Tully Crawford Funeral Home, 172 State Street, Portland. To view Pauline's memorial page or to share an online condolence, please visit www.ctcrawford.com.
Memorial contributions may be made to Heifer International, www.heifer.org.