NORTH HAVEN — Ruth W. Thayer, 91, died peacefully, Monday, Aug. 29, 2022, at Windward Gardens in Camden after a battle with dementia.

Born in Worcester, Massachusetts, she was the sixth of seven children of Grover and Carrie Ames Babbidge.

Ruth moved to North Haven with her father and younger sister, Ada, when she was a junior in high school. Her mother died when she was 11 and her father remarried to Katharyn Parsons Duncan on North Haven. Kay and her father had been classmates growing up on North Haven and began corresponding when they lost their spouses. Love bloomed and Grover moved back home. Ruth did not like the small island after living in the city. Soon though she made new, lifelong, friends at school, and she met Bud Thayer. The small community became home. After graduating from North Haven High School she married Edwin ‘Bud’ Thayer, living together on the island until Bud’s passing in May of this year, married 73 years on June 25.

To know Ruth you must know that despite living so many years on the island, and that Bud was a lobster fisherman into his 80s, she never liked being on a boat. She dreaded mainland appointments days ahead, looking at weather forecasts and wind predictions whether it was summer or winter. She joked how whatever she knit during a ferry ride she would need to pull it all out since it was full of mistakes. She used the money she made picking crabmeat for plane rides on and off the island whenever possible.

Ruthie kept busy over the years raising her family and was involved in the community – which she loved. She was the bookkeeper for her husband’s electrical business and also the island meter-reader in the early days of the Fox Island Electric Coop. When Bud founded Thayer’s Y-Knot Boatyard at Southern Harbor she again became active in the bookkeeping and handled payroll and tax filing. She was a longtime member of the island Baptist Church and Unity Guild, supporting them with knitted and sewing goods over the years. After her husband retired, Ruthie and Bud spent winters on Big Pine Key in the Florida Keys, traveling back and forth in their conversion van. She joined the “Red Hats Society” for their fun luncheons and made many, many friends over the years.

It can’t go without saying what a gracious host Ruth was – always had a “cup of coffee and something to go with it” for whoever stopped to visit, and many brownies and cookies. Many times Bud would bring in workmen, antique car parts buyers, or someone he met that didn’t realize there was no restaurant on the island for a meal. Ruth would find food, and always a dessert.

She was the best wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, aunt and friend. She especially loved having her family visit with their children and friends. She would have a “tea party” with the grandkids and later the great-grandchildren, loved to play board games, always had the bubble gum machine filled with M&M’s and a freezer stocked with ice-cream bars. Wonderful memories were made! She will be greatly missed.

In addition to her parents, Ruth was predeceased by her brothers, Courtney, Kenneth, and Stanley Babbidge; her sisters, Virginia Babbidge Pollisack, Dorothy Babbidge Silva, and Ada Babbidge Mailhot; as well as a very special cousin, Terry Babbidge Rockwell, who she thought of as a sister.

Ruthie is survived by her children, Linda Thayer Haskell and her life partner Roy Penniman of New Harbor, Deborah Thayer Langley and her husband Robert of Skowhegan, Raymond Thayer and his wife Donna of North Haven; nine grandchildren, Ryan Haskell and his wife Collette of North Haven, Molly Haskell and her partner Greg Nadeau of Rockland, Tess Haskell and her partner Seth Lewis of Spruce Head and Devin Haskell of North Haven, Diane and her husband Roger Chamberland of Skowhegan, Heather Langley Sadler and her husband Matt of Sydney, Carrie Langley Neumayer and her husband Peter of St. Albins, Neil Thayer and his wife Anna Lisa of Barre, Massachusetts, Ian Thayer and his wife Sara of Hillsborough, New Hampshire; 17 great-grandchildren, Sean and Isabelle Haskell, Seth and Caleb Sadler, Nora and Emery Nadeau, Jacob and Landen Neumayer, Haven, Ada, Leah, and Byron Marves and Ophelia Lewis, Isaiah and Elijah Thayer, Matthew and Ellen Thayer. She cherished her friendships with Freda Mills Smith, a North Haven 1949 classmate, Gene and Mary Ella Gove, and Jane Brown.

To share a memory or condolence with them, please visit their Book of Memories at Arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland.