Scarborough - Rita Marie Snow Keylor, of Court Street, Auburn, Maine died November 5, 2019 at theage of 101. Born May 16, 1918, in Pine Point, Maine, she was the youngest of ninechildren of lra Warren and Marie Angele (Robichaud) Snow.
For more than five decades she was a communicant at Sacred Heart Church, Auburn, Maine (now part of lmmaculate Heart of Mary Parish). She had long been a member of the Church's Prayer Group and its Golden Age Club.
Her education began in a one-room schoolhouse in Scarborough, Maine and continued at Thornton Academy, Saco, Maine, where she was valedictorian of the class of 1935. For two years she attended Portland Junior College. She then enrolled in Forsyth School of Dental Hygienists, Boston, Massachusetts, from which she graduated in 1939 - again, as valedictorian of her class. Her formal education culminated in a B.A. degree from University of Maine - Orono, where she was salutatorian of the graduating class of 1948.
Her dental hygienist career began in 1939 in the Bath, Maine office of Dr. Herbert Caverly. Responding to the war effort, in 1944 she was commissioned in the U.S. Navy. Ensign Rita Snow served as a dental hygienist at the U.S. Naval Hospital, Seattle, Washington through 1946. She continued in the dental health profession from 1958 to 1980 in Auburn, Maine. There she was the hygienist for Dental Associates Drs. Mann, Larlee, and Hall. A patient of hers expressed the sentiment of many; "Rita was always so nice - and she really did care about my wellbeing." She served as President of the Maine Dental Hygienists' Association during the late 1960s. Between her Navy service and decades as a dental hygienist, she taught languages at Canton High School and was a librarian at Portland Public Library from 1948 to 1954.
She was the devoted wife of Fred W. Keylor, Jr. At their wedding reception, in September 1953, a brother-in-law assured Fred, "You've married an angel." Each day, up until his demise forty-seven years later, Fred could confirm that truth.
She was an ardent gardener. Each fall she canned or froze the bounty of berries and vegetables she grew. Intricate leatherwork and embroidery were her wintertime hobbies. She had a profound appreciation for animals, especially dogs. Butch, then Gerda, and finally Cricket reciprocated her affection. We, her nieces and nephews, remember with great pleasure her signature specialty: homemade cookies and candies.
At Christmas, we received small bags - on which the dark stains really did indicate freshness! - containing assortments of her delicious creations. And she was the go-to person for information on any member of our extended families. For any name, date, or place - just ask Rita.
ln addition to her husband, she was predeceased by her mother and father, her brothers: Francis, lra Joseph, William, and Edward; and by her sisters: Sister Marion Snow, Esther Taylor, Ruth Dunn, and Angele Hogan. She is survived by twenty-eight of her thirty-three nieces and nephews - all of whom cherish the memory of "Aunt Rita" - and by numerous acquaintances and close Church friends.
At Rita's centennial in May 2018, more than a hundred relatives and friends attended a celebration at DiMillo's Restaurant in Portland. ln addition to Maine residents, attendees came from Florida, Texas, Washington, and from New Brunswick, Canada. Members of her Auburn Golden Age Group sang hymns and "oldies", and her nephew, Pat Hogan entertained, playing solo instrument. John Crowley, her senior nephew from Seattle, was the main speaker. Master of ceremonies, nephew James Dunn, read a most gracious letter of commendation from Rev. Robert Deeley, Bishop of the Portland Diocese, and a recognition letter from Maine's Senator, Susan Collins. Thornton Academy, her high school alma mater, sent birthday congratulations that recognized her as its oldest graduate, and presented her with a scarf in the school colors. Another nephew, Representative George Hogan, brought a proclamation in herhonor from the Maine State Legislature.
Friends and relatives may call at the Dennett, Craig & Pate Funeral Home 365 Main Street, Saco from 3-6pm on Friday November 8, 2019. A Mass of Christian Burial will be said at St. Margaret's Church, 6 Saco Avenue, Old Orchard Beach, Maine, on Saturday, November 9th, at 10:00 am. Burial will follow at Scarborough Memorial Cemetery, Old Blue Point Road, Scarborough, Maine. Immediately thereafter, a complimentary recognition luncheon will be served at Fairways Restaurant, Dunegrass Country Club, 65 Wild Duck Way, Old Orchard Beach, Maine.
ln lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Androscoggin Home Health and Hospice, 15 Strawberry Street, Lewiston, Maine 04240, or to: Sacred Heart - lmmaculate Heart of Mary Parish, 24 Sacred Heart Place, Auburn, Maine 04210.
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