Esther Parker dies gardener, horsewoman made Nixon’s enemy list

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SHERBORN, Mass. (AP) – Esther Parker, a renowned horticulturist and avid horsewoman whose name was on one of President Nixon’s enemy lists in 1972, died April 1 at her Sherborn home of pneumonia. She was 94.

Parker was among 490 people on a list submitted by presidential adviser John Dean to the Internal Revenue Service, according to the Dec. 3, 1973, issue of the Dover-Sherborn Suburban Press. The paper noted that she was a registered Republican who had contributed a “modest amount” to the campaign of Democrat George McGovern, Nixon’s opponent in 1972.

“I have absolutely no idea why my name is on that list,” she told newspaper. “I am a very quiet lady of advanced age who does a lot of gardening. Most people don’t think of me as an enemy of anything but a bug.”

Parker was well known for her prize-winning camellias, and wrote gardening columns for several publications.

Born in Boston, she was home-schooled by governesses and never attended formal school. In 1932, she married Augustin H. Parker Jr., an attorney whom she divorced in 1962.

Parker leaves a daughter, two sons, nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

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