PORTLAND — Arlene R. Babb, 76, with her husband Robert at her side and surrounded by her family, passed peacefully listening to Patsy Cline and Elvis on June 9, at Maine Medical Center, Portland. Arlene was sweet and kind and loving. But she was also strong and brave and so incredibly resilient.

Arlene, the daughter of Robert Crommett and Helen Dunton Crommett, was born May 25, 1942, in Norridgewock. In 1956, Arlene married Elwin P. Shields of Norridgewock, where they lived and raised their family. She was a loving, caring mother of her five children. In her spare time, family time filled her days with swimming trips to the Sandy River, barbecues in the backyard, spending time at the camp lot fishing and getting kids to baseball games. Arlene co-coached the first all-girl baseball team, the Angels, which allowed girls in Norridgewock to play baseball before softball became the girls’ game. One of her greatest joys were family holidays, when she made pies, rolls and pearled onions. Arlene was a great cook; she will be remembered for her fantastic dynamites, cheesecakes, spinach pie and cabbage rolls, just a few of her favorite recipes.

Arlene spent most of her life working in the shoe industry, employed by Norwalk Shoe and later New Balance and Cole Haan. One of her proudest accomplishments was earning her GED, and later being promoted to a salaried position where she conducted time-study analyses. After a life of work, Arlene retired in 2004.

In June 1998, Arlene married the love of her life, Robert Babb, of Wilton. Together, they made a life of friendships, spending a lot of time with their friends at dances and events in the Rumford area. Arlene loved to dance and she never passed up the chance to do the jitterbug.

Arlene is survived by her husband of 20 years, Robert “Bobby” Babb; her sister, Linda Holland, of Canaan; her children Elwin B. Shields and his wife, Leigh, of Dixfield, Kathi A. Shields of Port St. Lucie, Fla., Brian Shields of Norridgewock, Staci H.S. Warren and her husband, John, of Smithfield, and Wendi Shields of Waterville; stepchildren Scott Babb of Peru, Micki Alexsuk of Brooksville, Fla., and Mike Babb of Livermore; grandchildren Lorri Jo Brown of Farmington, Ryan M. Brown of Melrose, Mass., Kathleen Shields of Pittston, Rebecca M. Sucy and her husband, Aaron, of Rome, Zachary Warren of Norridgewock, Tyler Warren of Smithfield, Kristi and Christopher Yoos of Waterville, and Sam and Brady Shields of Norridgewock; great-grandchildren Hailey, Adam, Jacob and Gabriel Mealey of Farmington, and Brody, Natalie and Elloise Sucy of Rome; nieces Kathi Hadley Keast and her husband, Lloyd, of Cornville, Traci L. Hadley of Skowhegan; and nephew, Scott Martin, of Skowhegan; nieces Gale Turcotte Bailey and Sandra Turcotte Stapleton of Anderson, Ind., Glenda Turcotte Baker and husband, Jerry, of Orlando, Fla.; nephew, Michael Turcotte, of Chesterfield, Ind.; half-sister, Shilo Crommett, of Bladenboro, N.C.; and half-brother, Richard Crommett, of Crossville, Tenn. She is also survived by several other step-grandchildren; (great) nieces, nephews, cousins and countless friends.

She is predeceased by her infant daughter, Patti E. Shields; her sister, Cynthia; and her brother, Robert.

A special thank-you to the nursing staff in the oncology department at Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington, who grew to know and love Arlene as much as her family.

Arlene R. Babb

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