THOMASTON -- Maxine “Maggie” Lucy Mitchell Beckett, 95, passed away on August 25 following aperiod of declining health and the ongoing progression of Alzheimer’s dementia. Maggie was born onJanuary 23, 1924, in Thomaston, Maine, to Eleanor “Doris” Anderson Mitchell and George KennethMitchell. She grew up on Water Street, learning to swim, dive, and play along the waterfront, as one of the local kids who were called the “wharf rats.” She graduated from Thomaston High School in 1942, where she was class secretary, an alto in the Glee Club, a member of championship softball and basketball teams, and a DAR Good Citizen.
Always a hard worker, Maggie began working for Black & Gay Canning during her school years, weeding gardens and picking vegetables for the cannery. During her high school summers, she lived and worked at Lakewood Theatre on Lake Wesserunsett, where she cleaned cabins, helped in the kitchen, and waited on the tables of guests, theatre-goers, and the summer stock actors (including Vincent Price) who performed in summer plays there. After graduating from high school, Maggie went to work as a secretary in the Department of the Navy office at Bath Iron Works. Later, she moved to Boston, living at the Franklin Square House and working in the office of E.B. Badger & Sons. Moving back to Thomaston in 1948, she started working as a secretary and dental assistant in Dr. Lawrence Shesler’s dental office on Main Street.
In 1949, she was introduced to, and soon married the local mail carrier, Lloyd Beckett, who served as the town’s postmaster from 1961 to 1974. Together they built a small camp in Cushing, and then a new home next door to the Beckett family homestead on Wadsworth Street. Maggie lived in that house until moving to the memory care unit at Quarry Hill in 2016. While her children were young, she was a dedicated homemaker and mother, as well as an assistant Girl Scout leader and an active member of Thomaston Baptist Church, where she sang in the choir and helped with public suppers. She also enjoyed attending postmaster’s association meetings with her husband, bowling in a local women’s league, and being a member of a women’s group called the RB Club.
Each summer, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, the family moved to the camp that Maggie and Lloyd built on Stones Point in Cushing. There, she loved swimming, boating, fishing, sailing, vegetable gardening, berry picking, walking, bike riding, and taking picnic lunches to the local islands. In her late forties, she learned how to water-ski, and that became one of her favorite summer activities. Even during her last weeks, she was inviting visitors to visit the camp and go water-skiing with her. After the family boat was sold, she continued to swim in Maple Juice Cove and, at 80 years old, she learned how to kayak and enjoyed paddling around the shoreline.
Once her children were older, Maggie returned to work, first at the lunch counter of Brackett’s Drug Store in Thomaston, then returning to Dr. Shesler’s dental office, and continuing to work for Dr. Scott Kingsley until she retired. During her retirement, she loved spending time with her grandchildren, and enjoyed singing in several vocal groups, including the Harborside Harmony barbershop group, and theLiving Christmas Tree chorus. She also participated in the senior citizens’ group at the Federated Church and kept in touch with her classmates from high school, especially a group who went out to lunch together on a monthly basis until only a handful of them were able to attend. She continued spending every summer on her own at the family camp until she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s dementia at the age of 90. With the help of PALS for Living caregivers, Mary Ober and Sharon Pree, Maggie was able to visit her beloved camp as often as possible over the past five years. While providing friendship, comfort, and support, her PALS also took Maggie on outings, often stopping for some of her favorite treats – Wasses’ hot dogs, seafood of all kinds, Dorman’s caramel ice cream and hot fudge sundaes.
The family is grateful for everything her PALS did for Maggie over the years. They also thank The Courtyard staff at Quarry Hill and the MaineHealth hospice staff for providing such compassionate care.
Maggie was predeceased by her husband, Lloyd Beckett; her son Bradley Beckett; and her siblings, Richard K. Mitchell, Josephine Jameson Turner Miller, and Rose Marie Morse.
Left to cherish her memory are her daughter Jean Faustini; granddaughter Lindsay LaBree and her husband Jeremiah; grandson Nicholas Faustini and his wife Shelby Chadwick; great-granddaughter Ava LaBree; several nieces, nephews, and cousins; as well as her close friends and cousins-in-law Louise Ames and Barbara Sherbo.
A graveside service will be held for Maggie on Thursday September 5th at 2:30 p.m. at the Village Cemetery, Erin Street, Thomaston, Maine. Rev. Wayne Sawyer will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Bradley Beckett Fund, Cushing Historical Society, PO Box 110, Cushing, ME 04563. The fund provides college scholarships to high school graduates from Cushing.
Arrangements are with Hall’s of Thomaston, 78 Main Street, Thomaston, ME. 04861
To extend online condolences please visit hallfuneralhomes.com