Betty B. Raber, 94: Lifelong athlete, enjoyed traveling

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TOPSHAM — Betty Brooke Raber, 94, died peacefully at home Jan. 28.

On Sept. 15, 1916, she was born in Albany, N.Y., a daughter of Frank Wharton Brooke and Gertrude Travis Brooke, and  graduated from the Winchester-Thurston School in Pittsburgh, Penn. in 1934.

She attended Allegheny College, and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 1938.  

Following her graduation she worked at the treasurer’s office at the University of Pittsburgh.  

She married Thomas Joseph Raber, an engineer with Westinghouse Company, on Dec. 4, 1940.

For many years she lived in the Philippines, Japan, and France as a military wife until they returned to the Boston area. Later on they retired to Cocoa Beach, Fla.  

After her husband’s death in 1986, she moved to Topsham, where she pursued her hobbies of duplicate bridge, billiards, traveling, reading, and gardening.  

A lifelong athlete, she was an avid tennis player, and enjoyed golfing, swimming, and hiking.  

She was active in the Mid-Coast Presbyterian Church and the Habitat for Humanity program.  

In her late 80s, she learned to use a computer, and used it to write her autobiography, and enjoyed her Netflix subscription, reading The New York Times online and staying in touch with friends and family by email.  

Two weeks before her death, she discovered how to Google her old neighborhoods and was excited to see the changes in the towns where she had lived.

She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Jane Raber Crichton and Philip Schaefer Crichton of Brunswick, and her son, Thomas Frank Raber and his partner Sandra Lee Talbot of Ridgefield, Wash.; her sister, Jane Brooke Farnsworth of Palm City, Fla.; two granddaughters, Rebecca Jane Crichton of Providence, R.I. and Katherine Brooke Crichton of Seattle, Wash.; and two great-grandchildren, Ross and Anna Cornelissen of Providence, R.I.

The family would like to thank the nurses and staff of Cadigan Lodge for the truly exceptional care they gave Betty over the years.  

A memorial service will be held at 3:30 p.m., Feb. 24 at the Mid-Coast Presbyterian Church in Topsham.  

Memorial contributions may be made to The Mid-Coast Presbyterian Church, 84 Main St., Topsham, ME  04086 or to CHANS/Hospice, 45 Baribeau Dr., Brunswick, ME 04011.

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