Maxine Louise Wright, 97

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SOUTH PORTLAND — Maxine Louise Wright, 97, died on Feb. 8 at the South Portland Nursing Home.

Wright was born June 26, 1918, in South Portland to Jennie (Cook) Mears and Clarence Alton Mears. At an early age, she lived briefly in New Hampshire, and moved to the Boston area at age 5. She attended schools in Brookline and Somerville, Massachusetts, and graduated from Somerville High School in 1936. From 1935-37, she attended the New England Conservatory of Music.

In 1938, she and her family moved to Waldoboro, where she taught music in the area schools and gave private piano and voice lessons.

She married Frank E. Wright on October 5, 1940, in Rockland. They owned and operated Wright’s Lumber Mill in Waldoboro. They moved to Damariscotta in 1950, where they owned and operated the Spring Meadow Farm Inn.

Wright sold real estate for the James L. Lyons Agency and managed the Come Again Gift Shop in Damariscotta. She also served on the town of Damariscotta’s budget committee for 12 years.

She was treasurer of the Second Congregational Church in Newcastle and for six years was treasurer of the Miles Memorial Hospital League. On July 7, 1967, she co-chaired the opening of the Miles Memorial Coffee Shop where the first day’s menu consisted of Wright’s tuna sandwiches, lemon meringue pie and Emma Sherman’s egg salad sandwiches and homemade doughnuts.

The Wrights moved to Cape Elizabeth in 1980. A few years after Frank Wright’s death in 1986, Maxine moved to Portland. She was a docent at Portland’s Victoria Mansion and a volunteer cashier at the Portland Head Light gift shop for more than 16 years. For 20 years, beginning in 1982, she played in a league at the Big 20 Bowling Center in Scarborough.

She was an elder at the First Congregational Church in South Portland, where the Wright Pavilion, which made the church handicapped-accessible, was built and dedicated to honor her husband.

She was a Portland Symphony Orchestra Distinguished Service Trustee and attended all of its concerts for many years. She was a loyal supporter of the Salvation Army.

She is survived by her long-time companion, Will Beriau; and friends Wayne and Betsy Ross, along with many other loving friends.

A visiting hours were held Feb. 10, followed by a memorial service at the Hobbs Funeral Home in South Portland. Burial will be in Hillside Cemetery, Damariscotta.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to First Congregational Church, 301 Cottage Road, South Portland, ME, 04106 for the support of either the Music Fund or maintenance of the Wright Pavilion; or to the Portland Symphony Orchestra, P. O. Box 3573, Portland, ME, 04104.