Claudia M. Palmes, 94
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KENNEBUNK -- Claudia M. Palmes, 94, died peacefully on the evening of Saturday, Oct. 26, 2013, at St. Andre Health Care Facility. She was a devoted wife and mother, and followed many diverse interests in her long life. Born in Chicago in 1919, she was the only child of Henry and Claire Mortenson. Claudia lived in Highland Park in Chicago, until the family moved to California, attending Northwestern University for one year and San Mateo Junior College for another. Her family then moved to Washington, D.C., where Claudia worked at the National Institutes of Health as a research assistant. She was fascinated by science and met her future husband, Edward Palmes, at a chemical society meeting. Ed went on to a distinguished career in environmental medicine, and Claudia was his greatest admirer. They were married in 1944, until Ed's death in 2004.
Claudia spent most of her adult life in Peekskill, N.Y., while Ed was a professor at New York University. In her 40s, she returned to college at NYU, receiving a B.S. in sociology. Later the couple moved to Corvallis, Ore., where Ed did research at Oregon State University. Claudia took the opportunity to study geology for two years at OSU.
Claudia was also an avid gardener and cook, writing a personal cookbook for her family when she was in her 60s. She was a talented seamstress, a voracious reader on many subjects and had a strong artistic sensibility.
The last nine years of Claudia's life were spent at the Atria, in Kennebunk, the town where her daughter resides. She had very recently moved to St. Andre in Biddeford due to decreased mobility.
Claudia will be sorely missed by her children: John Palmes of Juneau, Alaska, Paul Palmes of Fargo, N.D., and Monica Palmes Grabin of Kennebunk; and by her son-in-law, Bill Grabin; and her two grandchildren, Gabe and Brenna Grabin.
Visiting hours will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 1, 2013, at the Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St., Kennebunk. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013, at Holy Spirit Parish, St. Martha's Church, Portland Road, Kennebunk. Interment will be in Arundel Cemetery, Kennebukport. Arrangements are in care of Bibber Memorial Chapel, Kennebunk. www.bibberfuneral.com.
Claudia M. Palmes
Published in Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on Oct. 30, 2013