PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Rena Chesley of 274 North Auburn Road, Auburn and 50 Silver Oak Drive, Port St. Lucie, Fla., died Nov. 21, at her Florida home, surrounded by her family.
She was born in Presque Isle, the daughter of Joseph and Rose Ricker Gallagher. After graduation, she went to work for the telephone company, where she met and later married Robert K. Chesley. Together, they made their home in North Auburn.
While raising three children, she began working part time for Wallingford's Orchards and Hiitt's Orchards. When the children were older, she completed her courses and went to work for Dr. Ralph Goodwin Jr. With the help of her friend and mentor, nurse Bertha Emond, she went on to work for Dr. Goodwin for some 25 years, until her retirement.
She and Bob were avid golfers and had close friends with whom they played golf and socialized. They were long time members of the Poland Spring Country Club and the Spanish Lakes Golf Club in Florida.
She and her husband went on to purchase their winter home in Port St. Lucie, Fla. They enjoyed 53 years of marriage together, until his death in April 2002.
She was loving, proud and supportive of her family. She was determined to remain strong during her daughter's illness and subsequent death, as well as her own brief and difficult battle with cancer. She was confident that all things are in God's hands and carried herself with grace and dignity.
Rena is survived by a daughter, Nancy and her husband, Warren Sawyer, of Port St. Lucie, Fla.; a son-in-law, Mike LeBlanc of Lewiston; a son, Robert and his wife, Kimberly Youland Chesley, of Auburn; six grandchildren, Melissa Sawyer Hoyt of Florida, Sara Sawyer Buchanan of Nottingham, N.H., Amy Keene of Greene, Jennifer Keene Luksza of Hebron, Gretchen Chesley Ward of Bowdoin and David Chesley of Nashua, N.H.; 10 great-grandchildren; two sisters, Bunny Saucier of Presque Isle and Dolly Conley of Auburn; a brother, Biggy Gallagher of Plant City, Fla.; and nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her husband, Robert; daughter, Terri Keene Leblanc; sister, Joey Penley; and three brothers, Newman, Chubby and Jack Gallagher.
The family would like to thank the Treasure Coast Hospice of Florida, the Aycock Funeral Home of Stuart, Fla., the Fortin Group of Auburn and the staff of the Mount Auburn Cemetery for their care and professionalism.