Erma I. Peters
Thomaston — Erma Irene Peters, 87, passed away peacefully with her loving family by her side Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013, at Windward Gardens in Camden.
Born on North Haven Island Nov. 6, 1926, she was the daughter of the late Leigh and Nettie Brown Witherspoon. Growing up on the island she attended school at the one-room school house until finishing her education. Upon completion of her schooling she moved off of the island and began work as a telephone operator in Belfast during the war.
While working for the phone company she met her future husband Gordon, who was working at the armory in Belfast. Once married the two would start their family and spend some time in Pennsylvania before returning to Maine for Gordon to begin work at Dragon Cement Company. While working for Dragon an opportunity presented itself that could not be turned down, Gordon was asked to go to Indonesia and work with locals there with Agresec Cement.
While living overseas Erma took the opportunity to completely immerse herself in the culture she was surrounded by. She learned to cook, and continued to cook the unique flavors of Indonesia for the rest of her life. While living abroad Gordon was stricken with polio and the family left Indonesia and moved back to Thomaston.
The move to Thomaston was not for long as another position opened for Gordon and the family again found themselves moving to a new adventure spot this time in Yugoslavia. Living there for two years and during the Cuban Missile Crisis there was a lot of stress around this move but the family quickly made friends with some Indonesian natives and they would all come over on their scooters for some of Erma’s cooking on the weekends. When finally returning to Maine she returned to her roots and to North Haven Island. She would work as a cashier at the local store, and having the distinction and honor of being the first woman selectman for the island. Living on the island until 1986 when she would move back to Thomaston and live there until her passing.
She may have been a homemaker but she was so much more. She was industrious and was a hardworker. She was always on the go and was always putting others first. She took care of her family as well as others that may not have been as fortunate. While in Thomaston she was a very active member at the Federated Church. She took part in the weekly sewing on Thursday where they would make quilts, knit various things, and make neck pillows all to be given to people that were in need. She was the president of the Woman’s club at the church for many years as well. Her favorite time of the year was the Christmas season. This took a lot of preparation and this preparation would usually take place right after Thanksgiving. There was baking to be done, and decorating, and parties to be planned. There was no greater joy to her than to have a houseful of people who she could feed. Her Christmas Stollen is still talked about to this day. She gave of herself as best as she could and continued to do a lot for her community even as getting out and about became increasingly difficult. A sprit that could not be caged she was a strong and independent person.
She was predeceased by her husband Gordon Spencer Peters; brothers Alexander, Steve, and Donald Witherspoon. Survivors include her sons Gordon Spencer Peters II, William Leigh Peters and his wife Lynn of Cushing, Douglas Elwyn Peters Sr. and his wife June of Dania Beach, Fla.; nine grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; special nephew Dick Witherspoon and his wife Janet; as well as other nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A celebration of life was held Saturday, Jan. 4, at 2 p.m. at the Federated Church in Thomaston with the Pastor Annette Mott officiating.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Benevolent Fund at the Federated Church in Thomaston 8 Hyler St Thomaston, ME 04861.
You are invited to share your condolences, memories, and photos with the family by visiting their Book of Memories at hallfuneralhomes.com. Arrangements are entrusted to Hall Funeral Home, Thomaston.