Katherine “Kay” Sickels Hayes

SCARBOROUGH – Katherine “Kay” Sickels Hayes, 98, passed away April 29, 2019. Although born in Providence, R.I., 1920, Kay spent her formative years in Falmouth Foreside where she met her future husband. During Christmas break from Wellesley College, Kay took a long train ride to Mississippi to wed Major Norman Hayes then deploying to England in the Army/Air Force as a meteorologist. Katherine returned to finish her chemistry degree and was hired by SD Warren in Westbrook, to assist a professor (who was initially reluctant to have a woman on his team!) to enhance the photo quality from surveillance flights in World War II. Ironically, her mother had done similar work for Kodak during World War I.

In 1944 Norm and Kay settled in Auburn, where they raised four sons and a daughter: Lincoln and Priscilla (Smalley), Robert and Bonnie (Jackiewecz) Nancy (Hayes) and David Conant, Peter and Michelle (Gilmore), and Daniel and Anna (McManus). The extended family includes 13 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.

There was little that Kay would not tackle, from raising livestock on the Auburn property, to teaching skiing at Lost Valley. She engaged her children in skiing, skating, hiking, sailing, swimming, tennis, and outdoor chores. She was adept at juggling all things creative and mundane, keeping her household of seven on track and intellectually challenged. The word ‘bored’ was disallowed as there was always a great book or the great outdoors to engage. Nor was there room for self-pity; as there was always something constructive to do. With her children grown, she re-invested her love for children by working in the Auburn schools for over 10 years; and to the end, played bridge brilliantly.

Katherine found great joy at the family’s Falmouth Foreside ‘cottage’ – for the view and water sports, and especially watching her children, then grand, and great-grandchildren play. After Norman passed, she would look out over the family gatherings wishing he were there, knowing how proud he’d be. Equally meaningful was the fulfillment of a dream first established in the late 30s at Wellesley when she mounted on her wall, a poster of Italy’s Amalfi Coast. Sixty years later, she would travel there with Peter and Michelle’s family, sharing a room with her four year old grandson, Jonathan. Together, they giggled and laughed their way across Italy and the Coast.

Katherine was predeceased by her parents George H. and Jane (Farley) Sickels; her husband and all four siblings, George, Farley, Jane and Porter.

Katherine was strong and independent and managed to enjoy her Falmouth home with the support of wonderful caregivers, neighbors and Falmouth Rescue. We are eternally grateful to Carolyn Ewald who cared for Kay, daily, over many years, for Kim Hobbs’ focused care, and for Pastor Joe Campbell’s loving devotion and prayers.

A celebration of life will be scheduled this summer at the Falmouth property for family, neighbors and close friends.

Norm and Kay Hayes blessed us all by their work ethic, humility, indominable spirit and love for others. May she rest in peace and be reunited in Heaven with Norman and the rest of her loving family.

In lieu of flowers,

the family requests donations to the

Casco Terrace Association

Janet Dooley

28 Casco Terrace

Falmouth, ME 04105

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