Linda A. Greenleaf, 68: Supported husband's career with grace and dignity
SCARBOROUGH — Linda A. Greenleaf, 68, died surrounded by family at the Seal Rock Healthcare Facility in Saco on July 9, following a lengthy battle with Parkinson's disease.
On June 15, 1941, she was born in Jersey City, N.J., daughter of Reginald and Marion Crossett.
She moved to Maine at an early age and was educated in South Portland schools, graduating from South Portland High School in 1959 with high honors. She later attended Newton Junior College in Newton, Mass.
She married James W. Greenleaf in June, 1962, and together they had two children, Eric and Kathryn.
For 30 years, she served as a positive force in her husband's career, which required more than a dozen moves around the country and Europe. She viewed each move, including 30 different residences, as a challenge to be dealt with and an opportunity to grow and learn.
While living in London, she was often asked by the American Ambassador in London to assist in diplomatic gatherings at the U.S. Embassy and at the Ambassador's residence.
She loved to travel, and had many memorable trips, including attending the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, as a guest of the Norwegian government, and participating in a celebration of the 50th anniversary of The Battle of the Coral Sea in Australia at the request of the White House. As always, she handled her duties with grace and dignity.
She was known for her quick wit and wonderful sense of humor. Her ability to recall details frequently resulted in winning games such as Trivial Pursuit or Scrabble against formidable opponents.
She especially loved her cats and enjoyed raising and finding homes for their kittens. Reading was an important part of her life and she was interested in a vast array of subjects including birds, travel, history, and mystery novels.
Family and friends will remember her most for the manner in which she raised her family and for being a positive role model for everyone. Above all, she was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother. She cherished her time with her family, who knew her as "Nanny," and valued her extended family.
She was predeceased by a sister-in-law, Eleanor Fox of Amhurst, N.H.
Surviving are her husband of 47 years, James W. Greenleaf of Scarborough; son, Eric W. Greenleaf and wife Cheryl, and grandson, Jarred, all of Scarborough, and in-laws, Carol and Walt Jellison of South Portland; a daughter, Kathryn G. Grant and husband Richard, and granddaughters, Haley and Elizabeth Grant, all of Sharpsburg Ga., and in-laws Richard and Rosalie Grant of Saco; brothers-in-law, Stephen Greenleaf of Pinehurst, N.C., and George Greenleaf of Newport, R.I., and sisters-in-law, Mary Jane Currier of Seattle, Martha A. Greenleaf of Freeport, and Patricia Murphy of Scarborough; and special friend Joyce Dimick of Scarborough.
A memorial service was held earlier this week.
A private family burial will take place at a later time.
Arrangements are by Hobbs Funeral Home, 230 Cottage Road, South Portland.
Memorial donations may be made to the National Parkinson Foundation, Inc., 1501 N.W. 9th Ave., Bob Hope Road, Miami, Fla., 33136-1494.