Jane Skelton Taintor, 86
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PORTLAND -- Jane Skelton Taintor, 86, died peacefully on Jan. 7, 2013, at Holbrook Health Center, surrounded by her loving family.
Jane was born in Boston, Mass., on Aug. 4, 1926, to Harold and Agnes Skelton, and raised in Lewiston. Born with spina bifida, Jane spent much of her youth in hospitals, in braces, casts, and wheelchairs. Her doctors predicted that she would no longer be walking by age nine, and that she would be unable to have children. From the beginning, though, Jane decided to embrace, not run from, the challenges she faced.
She graduated from the Convent of the Sacred Heart, Elmhurst in Providence, and attended Manhattanville College, graduating in 1948. Jane then attended Yale Law School, one of the few women of her generation to earn a law degree. There she met Frederick G. Taintor, the love of her life. Jane and Fred were married on July 2, 1951, and they settled in Lewiston, where they raised their family.
Jane was deeply and passionately involved with numerous causes and community associations. She was an organizing member of the Maine Right to Life Committee, which she served as President, Executive Director, and a board member. She served on the board of the Lewiston-Auburn YMCA, the St. Joseph's School Board, the Parish Council at St. Joseph's Parish in Lewiston, and later at St. Maximilian Parish in Scarborough. She was a life member of the Women's Hospital Association at Central Maine General Hospital.
The center and focus of Jane's life, though, was her family. She cherished and supported her husband and her children, each in their own way. And her tenderness was matched by her strength and strength of will. She was the consummate caretaker - of her husband, her children, her parents, and her extended family.
Jane was a woman of deep faith, committed to the Catholic Church. Her religious beliefs were reflected both in her love of nature - she was a devoted gardener and bird-watcher - and in her celebration of humanity. She was a tireless advocate and supporter of the disabled, able to see
the value of human life in all itsforms at a time when few others were as open-minded.
These qualities made Jane loved by all who knew her. She was known for her beaming smile, welcoming manner, and wonderful sense of humor. Jane loved jokes, the cornier the better, and laughed just as hard each time she heard the same joke. Her children grew used to hearing strangers say how much they admired her for the joy and serenity she brought with her wherever she went.
Jane is survived and will be greatly missed by her children, Frederick S. (Rick) Taintor and his wife Sheila of Newburyport, Mass., Anne Taintor and her husband Nathan Janoff of Portland, Elizabeth (Liz) Taintor of Steamboat Springs, Colo., Christopher Taintor and his wife Colleen of Cape Elizabeth, and Ellen Taintor and Duke Levine of Malden, Mass.; seven grandchildren, Nathaniel, James, and Margaret Taintor, Hannah Lemieux, and Michael, Emily and Brian Taintor; and five great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Fred, in 2009; by her brothers, William B. Skelton II and Harold S. Skelton, and is survived by her sister, Mary L. Ames.
Visiting hours will be held from 4-6 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 11, at Conroy-Tully Crawford South Portland Chapel, 1024 Broadway, South Portland. Prayers will be recited at 11:15 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 12, at the chapel, followed by a 12 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial at St. Maximilian Kolbe Church, 150 Black Point Rd., Scarborough. Online condolences may be expressed to the family at www.ctcrawford.com.
In lieu of flowers, donations
may be made to:
Pine Tree Society
P.O. Box 518, 149 Front St.
Bath, Maine 04530
(pinetreesociety.org), a statewide organization established
to meet the needs of Maine
people with disabilities.
Conroy-Tully Walker Funeral Homes
South Portland, ME 04106
Published in Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on Jan. 9, 2013