Anita Bickford Young, 94, beloved wife of Raymond Young, died in the arms of her daughter on Jan. 17, 2010, at Penobscot Bay Medical Center.

Born in Sabattus on Jan. 9, 1916, Anita was the third daughter of George and Mabel Dunton Bickford. She grew up in Auburn and attended Edward Little High School. In her teen years, she won two beauty contests, Miss Edward Little High School and Miss Old Orchard.

After graduating she worked at Owen Moores Department Store and lived on Park Avenue in Portland. During this time she met her husband, Raymond, at Old Orchard Beach, andthey married after a whirlwind courtship of just a few months. The couple was together for 63 years.

They made their first home in a little apartment on Union Street, and later built a house together on Washington Street, where they have since lived. They had many wonderful times together, from honeymooning at Niagara Falls to camping with friends for many years. Some of her special camping experiences were at Beaver Brook with Anita’s brother Bernard and his wife, Margie; Mic Mac Cove and Pemaquid with neighbors Bud and Helen Hallowell; and Sandy Shores with friends Hollis and Barbara Blastow.

Times were not always easy for the Youngs, as they experienced many hardships. Losing their two boys at birth brought out Anita’s inner strength and endurance, qualities her family and friends respected. Anita kept house and worked occasionally to raise extra money for special times like Christmas, but mostly stayed home and raised her daughter, Deborah.

Anita enjoyed crafts of many kinds including stitching on plastic canvas, crocheting and knitting gifts for family. She also tried her hand at ceramics with friends, always with thoughts of gifts for family in mind. She made quilts with her daughter, Deborah, for wedding gifts for her two married grandchildren.

Anita was always thoughtful and loving to friends and family and is best known for her cheerful attitude and sweet disposition. She never had an unkind word for anyone and was always there when anyone needed her.

Anita was predeceased by her parents and siblings, Bernard Bickford, Maude Worthing and Zelma Leighton.

She is survived by her husband, Raymond; her loving daughter, Deborah Rancourt and her husband, Jeffrey, of Bremen; four grandchildren, Jeremiah Rancourt and his wife, Lisa, of Hermon, Rene Henderson and her husband, Todd, of South China, Zachary Rancourt and Arielle Rancourt of Bremen; and one delightful great-grandchild, Cole Alan.

Visiting hours will be held Friday, Jan. 22 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St. in Rockland, where a celebration of her life will be held Saturday, Jan. 23 at 2 p.m. Everyone is invited to the Young home at 19 Washington St. for refreshments after the services.

Donations are suggested to the Salvation Army, 27 Payne Ave., Rockland, ME 04841.

To sign Anita’s online guestbook, visit obituaries at bchfh.com.