Barbara Davis.

VINALHAVEN — Barbara Joanne Davis, 88, passed away in the early morning on Jan. 13, 2022, at the Vinalhaven Eldercare homestead after a period of declining health.

She was born Barbara Joanne Thompson on June 30, 1933, in Port Clyde, Maine to Norman and Ruth Benner Thompson of Matinicus Plantation. She grew up on Matinicus and received her Childhood education there, and later on received her GED. ”

“Aunt Barb,” as she was known, was stricken with polio at a young age, but managed to live her life to the fullest. She loved her family and friends of which she had many. She was strong willed and stayed strong to her beliefs whether they be religious, political, or personal. Her dynamic personality was a gift to behold. Having come from a large family and growing up on a remote island, she was no stranger to hard work and getting by. She was a terrific cook, which she enjoyed very much, and was always willing to share her techniques with others. She enjoyed cooking, crocheting, and gardening. She held various jobs, such as: a factory worker processing lobster for shipping, a cook, waitress and caregiver in assisted living facilities in Florida and Maine. She was also sought out by many island residents, as well as summer residents, for her expertise in wallpapering, which she enjoyed and took pride in.  During her years of residency at Vinalhaven Eldercare, she enjoyed the many suppers put on in her honor by her close family members and was so appreciative of their loyalty to her.

She was a proud member of IARA — the International association of Rebekah Assemblies — and held true to it’s dutiful order.

On Sept. 14, 1954, she married Donald Oakes Jr. of Vinalhaven, and together they shared many years on the island. She gave birth to a son, Randolph S. Oakes, on March 14, 1956, and a daughter, Virginia E. Oakes (Ginger), on April 10, 1960. On Feb. 25, 1968, a tragic accident claimed her daughter’s life. Her never ending faith saw her through believing she would once again be reunited with her beloved Ginger.

On Aug. 19, 1978, she married Gordon Davis of Vinalhaven in Columbia Falls, Maine. Together, they shared ten happy years in Florida and Maine.

She was predeceased by her parents, Norman and Ruth Benner Thompson; as well as her siblings: Capt. E. Frank Thompson of Vinalhaven, Hilda Flood of California, Virginia Fogg of Rockland, Edith Wilson of Owls Head, Eunice Gamage of Rockland, and Irene Young of Vinalhaven; her first husband, Donald Oakes Jr.; her second husband, Gordon Davis; and her daughter, Virginia (Ginger) Oakes; and two nieces: Elaine Gamage Steeves of Rockland and Thompson Hopkins of Vinalhaven.

She is survived by her son, Randolph Oakes, and his wife, Rhonda, of Vinalhaven; a niece, whom she considered a daughter, Ruth Gamage Ames, of Verona Island; as well as a stepson, Johnny Davis of Vinalhaven; her dear friends, Ricky and Carol Oakes of Mountain View, Calif., whom she loved dearly and spent two years with them in their home later in life; nephews: Norman Gamage Sr. of Owls Head, Ernest Gamage Jr. of Waldoboro, Floyd Oliver of Owls Head, Frank Thompson of Vinalhaven, Steve Young of VinalHaven and Norman (Jack) Young of Vinalhaven; nieces: Julie Oliver Hyatt of Warren, Shelly Wardwell Carraway of Louisiana, Sharon Gamage Preston of Rockland, Ruth Gamage Ames of Verona Island, Gladys Gamage Hutchinson of Vinalhaven, Eunice Gamage Alfano of Union and Faye Thompson Grant of Vinalhaven; as well as many great nieces and nephews. Also, cousins: James Thompson of Owls Head, Lerman Thompson of Warren, and June Martin of Vinalhaven.

A deep appreciation of Vinalhaven Eldercare and its caregivers for the care she received, as well as the relationships she developed with them during her stay at the home. Also, much gratitude and appreciation to her good friend Dinah Moyer for her attentive and willing contribution to her needs. Also, a deep appreciation to the island community medical center, Jen Desmond and staff.

Memorial donations may be made to the Pope Memorial Humane Society, 225 Buttermilk Lane, Thomaston, ME 04841 for her love of animals. A remembrance and gathering will follow in late spring. Burial will be in Browns Head Cemetery, Vinalhaven.

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