AUBURN — Claudette D. Lemelin, 84, beloved mother and memere, died Wednesday, March 21, at Hospice House of Androscoggin in Auburn, with family by her side. Born on Aug. 19, 1933, in Livermore Falls, she was the daughter of Carmelle (Labine) Castonguay and Peter Castonguay, one of 13 children. She was educated in Livermore schools, and graduated from Livermore Falls High in 1952.

Claudette was a communicant of St. Rose of Lima Church in Jay. As a young woman her dream was to become a nurse, but she instead became a source of comfort and caring to those around her. She worked as a cook for many years at Bear Mountain Diner and TJ’s Diner, where her cooking was enjoyed by many generations of regulars.

On June 20, 1953, at St. Rose of Lima Church, she married Alcide “Frenchy” Lemelin, and enjoyed 60 years of marriage before his passing in 2014. She adored the outdoors, especially walking and working in her garden, but most of all she had a passion for spending time at “The Lake.” She and her husband owned a parcel of land on Long Pond where she spent her summers, welcoming all family members, which is why there is such a close and faithful bond now among all 55 cousins.

Claudette loved children, especially the babies. They brought such joy even in the last days of her life. Despite the pain she endured, she had a smile for all those who crossed her path. Many of her caregivers commented on how beautiful her smile was.

Claudette is survived by her children, Denise Deschenes and husband, Daniel, Paul Lemelin and wife, Karen (Iannucci) Lemelin, Patricia (Pat) Sarrazin and husband, Paul, and Michelle Lemelin; grandchildren, Danielle Deschenes and partner, Mike Sacks, David Deschenes and significant other, Christina Lutes, Darren Deschenes and wife, Ashley, Dean Deschanes and wife, Bethany, Devin Deschenes, Amy (Sarrazin) Wedge and husband, Ryan, Michael Sarrazin, Ryan and Kyle Lemelin; and multiple great-grandchildren; sisters, Theresa Miranda, Anita Couture, Pauline Dion, Jacqueline Mercier; and her brother, Paul Castonguay.

She was predeceased by her husband, Alcide “Frenchy” Lemelin; and great-grandson, Cullen Alcide Deschenes; brothers, Roger and Rene Castonguay; sisters, Margaret Williamson, Gloria Henry, Patricia Nadeau, Lorraine Cote and Louise Nolette.

We would like to thank all of the doctors, nurses and caregivers who took care of mom at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center, the Hospice House and the Woodlands Memory Center.

Messages of condolence may be sent to:

Claudette D. Lemelin

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