1924 – 2016

LEWISTON — Helen C. Archambault, 91, of Lewiston died Sunday, May 1, in Lewiston.

She was born in Paris, Texas, on Aug. 27, 1924, and was the oldest of three children of Angus and Cora (Allen) Choate. She was a graduate of the Class of 1942 of Central High School in Little Rock, Ark., and attended the University of Arkansas.

She met her husband, Philip L. Archambault, M.D., at Fort Sill, near Lawton, Okla., where she was retraining veterans who had lost their hearing during World War II. They married in Little Rock, Ark., in 1946 and moved to Lewiston where Dr. Archambault became the first French-Canadian physician admitted to the staff of Central Maine General Hospital. They were married for 58 years and he died in 2004.

She was a homemaker and they had four children. She taught art as a volunteer at St. Joseph’s School for many years, and loved to enrich children’s lives by introducing them to various artistic styles and media.

She was an active member of the Woman’s Hospital Association, volunteering at CMMC, (then Central Maine General Hospital) in the 1950s and ’60s.

As a resident of Lewiston, she had a particular interest in textiles, and her tenure as a member of the Arts Council of Maine in the 1970s allowed her to showcase them in an exhibition titled “The History of Textiles in Maine” at the Treat Gallery at Bates College.

She was a member of the board of The Guild of the Portland Museum of Art, raising funds by arranging European art tours from 1983 to 1994.

She was a voracious reader, loved literature and learning, and was known to take four courses at a time at the Senior College of USM well into her 80s. Those of particular interest to her were classes in history, literature and the opera. She was also a member of the Jane Austin Society of North America.

She had a deep appreciation for the decorative arts and antiques, and became an avid collector and an antiques dealer, specializing in oriental rugs. She had an extraordinary sense of the aesthetic and was a gracious hostess. She particularly enjoyed entertaining friends, neighbors and “her” Bates students, staff and faculty.

Helen is survived by her son, Philip (Pat) and his wife, Laura, of Randolph, N.H.; son, Thomas and his wife, Linda, of Bangor; son, Andrew of Milton, Mass.; and daughter, Anne Archambault and her husband, Robert Provencher, of Freeport. They have eight loving grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Online condolences and sharing of memories may be expressed at www.lynchbrothers.com.

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