Robert Graham McGuire died May 13, 2010, at his home in Damariscotta. He was 93, and nearly indestructible. Born in Pelham Manor, N.Y., he was the son of Frances (Smith) McGuire and Clarence V. McGuire, and big brother to two sisters, Phoebe and Frances.

Bob was valedictorian (class of ’36) at Grosse Pointe High School in Grosse Pointe, Mich. After high school, he and his future wife, Nancy, attended the Detroit Society of Arts and Crafts for two years. He next studied at Black Mountain College in Asheville, N.C., an experimental, utopian arts school, owned and operated by the faculty (including members of the Bauhaus School). Bob’s educational journey then took him to Columbia University in New York City, where he supported himself with a variety of jobs: clerking in bookstores, acting as an assistant to an eccentric millionaire, and working as a docent at the 1939-40 World’s Fair. He earned a master’s degree in English from Wayne State University in Detroit.

Bob taught English and drama at Highland Park Junior College in Detroit, at Oldfields School in Glencoe, Md., and retired as a professor from University of Maine at Augusta after teaching there for 15 years. Bob’s teaching career allowed him to spend summers pursuing his passion for collecting antiques. For many years he owned Red Door Antiques in Romeo, Mich.; after the family moved to Maine year round in 1967, he opened the Pocket Watch Antiques Shop. He and Nancy were ardent travelers, and loved meeting new people. They were very active members of Round Top Center for the Arts.

Bob worked tirelessly to perfect nature’s flaws. His flower gardens were fantastic works of art. His obsession with rare and beautiful flora led him to the admittedly dubious practice of smuggling cuttings out of historic gardens and transplanting them into his own. He and Nancy were enthusiastic home renovators who integrated old materials with new design elements in a series of houses.

He was predeceased by Nancy, his wife of 68 years.

He is survived by his daughter, Phoebe and her husband, John Nichols; his daughter, Susan and her husband, Bruce Beaudette; his grandson, Sam Nichols and his wife, Laurie San Martin, and their daughters, Georgia and Annabel Nichols; his step-grandchildren, Liz Bordman and Jack Nichols and their children, Max Bordman and Sarah Nichols.

He had wonderful neighbors and many faithful friends who looked after him and kept him entertained. His family recognizes the caregivers who made it possible for Bob to live at home for the past three years, in the manner to which he was accustomed: Mary Bailey, Barbara Chartier, Allison Ellerbee and Susan Gilbert.

A memorial for family and friends will be held in August. Donations in memory of Robert McGuire may be made to Skidompha Library in recognition of his lifelong interest in books and reading. Arrangements are with Smeltzer Family Cremation & Funeral Service.