Mary Carpenter Chadbourn

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NORWALK, Conn. - Mary Carpenter Chadbourn died peacefully at her home on Monday, March 11, 2019. She was 91.Born June 6, 1927, to Thomas and Elsie Carpenter, Mary was raised in Rowayton, Conn., and attended Thomas School and Colorado College, before marrying Albert Rathbone Adkins (December 1993), with whom she had four children.In 1962, she married artist, Alfred "Chip" Chadbourn (December 1998), with whom she had a daughter. Mary and Chip were voracious readers, avid travelers, beach lovers, and culture vultures. They shared a sense of adventure and irreverent humor, surrounding themselves with the admiration, support, laughter, and tolerance of good friends.Mary spent many years as an early childhood educator, eventually starting her own private daycare in Yarmouth, Maine. Her laissez-faire style of child rearing empowered her charges to believe in themselves and forge their own paths. (Miraculously, they all survived.) She also had a keen wit, often prevalent in her whimsical rhymes and children's books.Mary's fierce competitive streak was on full display during a number of sporting events, March Madness tournaments, and family card games, always accompanied by her trademark expletives, which delighted her grandchildren. While her late husband, Chip, gleaned raves for his culinary delights, Mary could hold her own in the kitchen and will be remembered for her sensational meatloaf (for which she refused to divulge a recipe), and her decadent Mississippi Mud Pie.An unapologetic individualist, Mary neither conformed to trends nor to what other people thought, simply adhering to her own unique style. She possessed a strong sense of social justice and inclusion, declaring, "I'll be a member of any club, as long as everyone can join."Mary was preceded in death by some fabulous close friends; her parents; her sister, Charlotte Judge; and her son, Albert "Skip" Adkins Jr. She is survived by her children, Thomas Adkins, Debby Adkins, Andy Migner, and Jessica Chadbourn, and loving nieces and nephews. Mary's legacy lives on in her many adoring students, 11 grandchildren (three in the Portland area: Tara Williams, Kelley Sigovich, and Megan Sigovich), seve great-grandchildren, and one very devoted and spoiled cat. A private memorial service will be held in Maine this summer. Please don't send flowers; the cat will eat them.

To honor Mary's love of animals, donations can be made to:Audubon Society and the National Humane Society.

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Published in Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on Mar. 24, 2019
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