1916 – 2014

LEWISTON — Catherine King Oliver, 98, of Portland died on Friday, May 30, attended by family members as she joined her beloved husband, Vincent, in Heaven.

She was born in Boston on March 3, 1916, to Patrick and Barbara Joyce King, recent arrivals from Ballyconneely County, Galway, Ireland.

She left Boston at age 11, following her mother’s premature death and was raised in Houlton and Portland by her aunt, Mary King. She graduated from Cathedral High School and the Northeastern Business College in Portland.

Catherine worked at Emery-Waterhouse prior to starting a family. After her children completed high school, she returned to work as a teacher’s assistant at the Hall School in Portland.

Catherine and Vincent married in 1945 and spent 57 years happily married before Vincent’s death in 2002. They raised their four children on Stevens Avenue in Portland, where they were actively involved in community and church affairs at St. Patrick’s Parish, as well as their children’s many educational and sports activities.

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They spent many happy summers together with family and friends at the home they built together on Sebago Lake, where they later retired.

Following retirement, Catherine and Vincent spent winter months at their home in Winter Haven, Fla., in the company of many friends from Maine and new acquaintances from Florida. They also enjoyed their trips to Ireland, visiting with Catherine’s sisters and many nieces and nephews.

Friends and family, including grandchildren and great grandchildren were the center of Catherine’s life. Enjoyable times for her included holiday gatherings, a good game of cards, various outdoor activities such as swimming, sailing, fishing, ice skating, water skiing (all of which she engaged in well into her 70s), and any occasion to laugh or share a good story. She remained upbeat, positive and good-humored throughout life, even during times of adversity, always making the best of what life held in store.

She is survived by her daughters, Cathy Hansen and husband, Harry, of Melbourne Beach, Fla., and Frances Fowler and husband, Fenwick, of Farmington; sons, John Oliver and wife, Anita, of Yarmouth, and Tom Oliver and wife, Terry, of Poland Spring.

She is also survived by her beloved grandchildren and great-grandchildren, including Lisa Backman and husband, Jim; Ray Letarte and wife, Ana; Tony Oliver and partner, Jessica Harrison; Joseph and Mattie Fowler; Ray, Tammy, and Jeff Hansen; Walter and Oliver Backman; and Tony, Omar, and Bridgette Letarte; and many nieces and nephews in Ireland and California.

In addition to her husband, Catherine was predeceased by her sisters, Barbara and Mary King of Boston and Anna Kenny and Dorothy McCormack of Ireland; and her brother, Joseph King of San Francisco.

She was a resident of d’Youville Pavilion in Lewiston since October 2011, where she was cared for by the loving staff. Her enthusiasm for the social activities and regular exercises showed her true mettle. Her family appreciated her “4 West” family and, in the last few weeks, their many stories about Catherine’s faith, resilience and character.

Online condolences may be expressed at www.ctcrawford.com.

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