AUGUSTA – Rita DeRosby, the mother-in-law of Maine’s Republican Gov. Paul LePage died Sunday.

DeRosby, 77, the mother of First Lady Ann LePage, lived with her daughter and son-in-law at the governor’s mansion, the Blaine House, during the summer months.

A medical condition she suffered made it difficult for her to spend time in the cold so she would winter in Florida, Ann LePage has said.

DeRosby was frequently mentioned by Gov. LePage, who spoke highly of her feisty spirit and how she inspired him and her daughter Ann. 

“Rita made no apologies for her beliefs. She was known for her unconditional love and support. Her infectious laugh and her beautiful smile could bring joy to anyone,” an obituary published in the Waterville Morning Sentinel newspaper on Wednesday read.

Maine’s top elected officials, including U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, have begun extending their condolences to the family.

“Rita DeRosby was a truly inspiring woman, always able to find the humor in any situation, even as she dealt with a difficult, long-term illness,” Collins said in a prepared statement issued Tuesday. “Rita participated in countless events in communities across our state over the years, demonstrating her deep love and loyalty to her family and her strong commitment to the people of Maine.”

A memorial service is planned for Friday at the Faith Evangelical Free Church in Waterville.

This story will be updated.

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