Mary Ellison Hastings of Boothbay Harbor, Maine, died peacefully in the company of her family on Friday, January 4th at Miles Memorial Hospital in Damariscotta after a brief illness. Ellie was the daughter of Dr. Richard T. Ellison and Mary Cunius Ellison of Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania, where she was born in 1921 and graduated from Springside School in 1938. She attended Wellesley College for a time and then worked as a lab technician at the University of Pennsylvania Hospital. After the war she was married for several years to Henry C. Hastings. In 1954, Ellie returned to Chestnut Hill where she raised her two sons Rip and Jeff, working at Chestnut Hill Academy from which both boys graduated in the 1970s. In the 1990s Ellie moved to Maine, first to Bath where she lived for several years, and then in 2000 to St. Andrews Village in Boothbay Harbor, where she became a fixture of the local needlework scene until her death. She was an artist in cross stitch, counted thread and needle work of all types. Countless children have worn her baby sweaters, soldiers and marines have worn her knitted helmet liners, and dozens of all ages are comforted by a prayer shawl that she made. She holds the hard-earned distinction of Master Craftsman from the Embroidery Guild of America and she has filled the world around her with the work of her hands and shared her skill and passion by teaching others. From the time she was a girl, Ellie spent the summer on Squirrel Island, which ever since has been her spiritual home and family. Ellie is survived by her brother Tom, his wife Jean and their children and grandchildren; by her son Jeff and his children Drew, Nick, Will and Sophie; and by her son Rip, his wife Beth and their children Emily, Andrew, Zach, Molly and Lucy. Ellie wanted to be remembered along with other Squirrel Islanders at the first chapel service this next July on Squirrel Island. In the meantime, if you wish, the family suggests that you remember her with a contribution to the Squirrel Island Preservation Foundation or your favorite Squirrel Island organization or activity, c/o Rob Hopkins P.O. Box 85, Boothbay Harbor, ME 04538.
Arrangements are entrusted to Simmons Harrington and Hall Funeral Home 975 Wiscasset Road Boothbay, ME 04537
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