Elizabeth I. Spalding

PORTLAND — Elizabeth Irwin Spalding, 82, beloved sister, aunt, friend, mentor and activist, died at St. Joseph’s Manor in Portland. Liz, as family and friends knew her affectionately, succumbed to Parkinson’s disease after a seven-year struggle.
Liz was born and raised in Portland. She was an avid equestrian who boarded her horses in Cape Elizabeth. She was a gifted student and graduated at the age of 16 with high honors from Deering High School and then from Bryn Mawr College, where she studied classical literature, graduating with high honors in 1949. Upon graduation, Liz took some time to see the world, motorcycling through Europe with several of her friends. She then pursued an opportunity to work for the United Nations in Geneva, and later moved to U.N. offices in London and New York.
Liz returned to Maine in 1956 and from the late 1950s on she devoted nearly all her life to the health, development and future of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog breed. This was her passion for 45 years. Liz was a founding member of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club USA and helped establish the rules and regulations for this breed. She became a renowned judge at both national and international Cavalier shows. Her own dogs, which were known for their wonderful temperaments, intelligence and beauty, won many “Best In Show” awards for her Kilspindie Kennel. The world of show dogs will miss her wise and devoted counsel.
Liz was an estimable competitor, especially with board games and croquet! She maintained beautiful gardens and many stately shade trees at her home in Falmouth, and had a particular affinity for roses, amaryllis and orchids.
Liz was a devoted aunt to six nieces and nephews, who had the utmost respect for her quick wit and sophistication. She challenged them to keep abreast of current events always offering insightful and sometimes provocative perspective. Liz was a stickler for appropriate grammar and a true academic who enjoyed debating issues passionately. Liz was as generous and philanthropic as she was frugal, her kindness and dedication spilling over to the extended families of her brother’s children, including the family dogs of course.
Her family will remember her as a woman brilliant and independent who set standards to which we should all strive.
Through most of her adult life in Maine, Liz lived with and cared for her mother, Kathleen Spalding, who passed away in 1999.
Liz leaves a brother, Peter Spalding of Raymond; six nieces and nephews and their spouses, their 11 children; and several great-grands.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to: Maine Friends Of Animals, 190 US Route 1, Falmouth, ME 04105.

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