Eugenia S. Horton, 96
WEST PARIS — Eugenia Swanton Horton, 96, passed away on Friday, May 3, 2013.
The youngest of two children, Eugenia was born in Dexter on July 30, 1916, to George Eugene Swanton and Alice May Larrabee. Genie graduated from N.H. Fay High School in 1934 and from Farmington Normal School in 1938.
During the Depression years, she taught in elementary schools in Garland, Woolwich, Bath and Otisfield. She loved to tell stories about the one-room schools where she would teach all eight grades, often only one child per grade. Sometimes the youngest child would be only four years old, because both parents needed to work.
On July 4, 1945, she married Clarence Eugene “Bob” Horton in Otisfield, in what they laughingly called their “shotgun wedding,” because a shotgun hung over the mantelpiece and the festivities included a shooting match. They moved to New Haven, Conn., where Bob wrapped up his career as a research engineer for Winchester Arms. In 1946, they moved to Otisfield. Their daughter Jean was born in 1947, and in July of 1948, they moved to East Waterford to establish Horton Ballistics.
Genie was a stay-at-home mother for the next 15 years, during which time she was active in the North Waterford Congregational Church, choir, 4-H, the Rebekahs and civic events, such as canvasing for funds to build Stephens Memorial Hospital.
People will remember her as always singing or humming quietly, wherever she was. She loved music, reading, history, bird hunting, children, her family and nature. A highlight of every spring was finding the first arbutus and the first lady slipper. The one thing in nature she hated was snakes. Her daughter loved to catch them in their field and bring them to her. In good teacher fashion, she would say, “Isn’t he beautiful? Now put him back where you found him so his mother can find him.” It was Genie’s loving way of getting the creature away without passing on her own fears. Jean remembers being in OHHS biology class before she realized that the snakes are on their own from the time they are hatched.
In 1961, Genie decided to return to teaching. Over the next eight years, she taught and attended night and summer classes, to complete her fourth year of college, a requirement of Maine, graduating from Gorham State College in 1969. She spent several happy years teaching sixth, seventh and eighth grades in Hebron. Later on, she moved to the Guy E. Rowe School in Norway, where she taught until she retired in 1981. She was proud to be a member of Delta Kappa Gamma.
Because of good friends in Waterford, she was able to stay in her beloved home until she was 90.
She is survived by her daughter, Jean Eichhorn, of Nottingham, N.H.; her grandson, granddaughter and two great-granddaughters.
Genie was predeceased by her parents; and her brother, George Coakley Swanton.
Online condolences may be shared with her family at www.chandlerfunerals.com
At Eugenia’s request, there will be no services. Donations in her memory may be made to the North Waterford Congregational Church. Arrangements are under the direction of Chandler Funeral Homes & Cremation Service, 45 Main Street, South Paris.