1919 – 2015

SCARBOROUGH — Mary Dexter Boutin, 95, formerly of Pine Point, Scarborough, passed away on Sunday, Feb. 7, at the Gosnell Memorial Hospice House. Most recently, Mary lived at Birchwoods at Canco, Assisted Living, Portland.

Mary, affectionately known as “Meme,” was born in Lewiston on Dec. 10, 1919, to Emily (Cummisky) and Daniel Sheehan Dexter. She graduated from Lewiston High School, where she was active in clubs and sports. Mary was a Bates College alumni with an advanced degree in social services from the University of Maine.

Mary’s career path began in Lewiston at B. Peck Co., an affiliate of Boston-based Filene’s, where she met her husband, Reginald W. Boutin. An entry-level position managing a thriving Santa Photo Shop at Christmastime displayed Mary’s skill set. Her potential was quickly recognized and Mary was selected to join the ranks of management as one of the first female personnel directors of a major department store in the Filene’s corporate chain. For the next 10 years, Mary juggled management meetings in Boston, her work at B. Peck in Lewiston and her commitment to be an active parent.

The commitment to family led Mary to shift career paths in her late 40s, and she became a social worker for Child Protective Services, Maine Department of Health and Welfare, in Portland and in Lewiston. Mary, nicknamed the “Hat Lady” at the office, wore a fashionable hat to work every day. Her young clients often watched for her signature hat as she drove to see them in her trademark convertible. At Mary’s retirement dinner in 1983, everyone wore a hat to honor her. Mary was recognized for her passion to provide adolescents a healthy meal, a safe place to sleep and the chance to reach their potential. Mary’s tireless efforts had positively impacted her caseload of families and their children.

Mary and Reggie extended their summers at her beloved Pine Point into year-round living where Mary was the center of beach activity for family, friends and neighbors. An integral part of the beach community, “Meme” could be found on Pine Point Beach regardless of the weather. She was first in and last out of the ocean for years. On cold, sunny, winter days, Mary would bundle up in her down coat and snooze on the deck on her lounger. An active member and former secretary of the Pine Point Association, Mary had the plover colony well under control 30 years ago and wasn’t bashful about speaking up if her beach was threatened.

Mary was a woman for all seasons, enjoying days of skiing at Saddleback, snowshoeing and sledding while overseeing three generations of skiers on the mountain near Sherm’s cabin providing hot chocolate for the “gang.”

Mary was fully present at every event that her children and grandchildren participated in from grade school through adulthood. Meme beamed with pride as she cheered on the sidelines at sporting and equestrian events, school plays, musicals, graduations and recognitions.

In retirement, Mary had time to follow local musicians in outdoor concerts while keeping pace with her husband’s love of “the game.” Mary was on ESPN, celebrating 90 years as a Boston Red Sox fan, on Mother’s Day in 2009.

She continued her service to community by serving on committees and boards to provide awareness education and funding for alcohol prevention programs, housing for unwed mothers and career development for single women. Mary remained an active alumnus of Bates College. She was a past deacon of Trinity Episcopal Church in Lewiston, which is home to the Sheehan-Dexter stained-glass windows depicting her family’s ancestry.

Mary was predeceased by her husband, Reginald W. Boutin.

She is survived by three children, Sherman L. Lahaie Jr. and fiancée, Patricia Biron, of New Hampshire and Scarborough, Anne-Mayre Dexter and husband, Dennis S. Danie, of South Portland and Daniel W. Boutin and wife, Ann Adams, of Portland; six grandchildren, Derek Lahaie and wife, Sue, of Lakeville, Mass., Danielle Lahaie Kelliher and husband, Tom, of Falmouth, Mass., Emily D. Lamb and husband, Jonathan, of Hamilton, Mass., Louisa M. Raby and husband, John, of Scarborough, Elliot Adams Boutin of Tongcheng, China, and Alexander Adams Boutin of Brooklyn, N.Y.; and nine great-grandchildren, Julia, Jenna and Jessica Lahaie, Emmet and Gates Kelliher, Avery and Walker Lamb and Dexter Raby. She is also survived by nephews, Stephen Thompson and wife, Nona, of Hallowell, James Boutin and wife, Susan Kimball, of Hollis, Daniel S. Dexter III and wife, Beth, of Prairie Du Sac, Wis.; and nieces, Susan Thompson and husband, Jules Cloutier, of Topsham and Victoria Dexter of Brooklyn, N.Y.

Condolences may be expressed online at www.hobbsfuneralhome.com.

The family wishes to thank the caring staff at Birchwoods for three years of devotion to their mother’s well-being. Mary made friends with residents and truly loved the staff.

In Mary’s final hours, the staff at the Gosnell House in Scarborough provided a gentle departure for Mary, while easing the pain for her family. Thank you.

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