Jane M. Crowley, 95

Jane Crowley

PORTLAND — Jane Marshall Crowley, 95, formerly of Naples and of Portland, died on Monday, July 16, 2018, at The Cedars in Portland, where she had been residing since mid-April.

Born in New York City, N.Y., on March 25, 1923, to John A. Marshall, a prominent Portland area photographer who owned Portland Engraving and a photo shop in Naples, and Marion L. Marshall, proprietor of the Ye Village Tea Room in Naples. Jane spent her childhood between Stevens Avenue in Portland and summers at the farmhouse near the corner of Rt. 114 in Naples.

Jane married Harry L. Crowley on Oct. 29, 1949, in Naples, at the Union Church with a reception following at The Arrowhead Lodge. Harry predeceased her on August 18, 2007.

After graduating from Deering High School, Jane received degrees from Westbrook Junior College (now the University of New England) and from Tufts University. Science, English and Reading were her areas of expertise. She taught English at Standish High School, reading at Cushing Academy, and was a lab technician in a research lab at Harvard University. Jane taught sixth grade at Page School in Ayer, Mass., from 1972 until she retired in 1986. She thoroughly enjoyed being a teacher and shared her love of education with countless young people in and out of the classroom. Jane could relate to children and was a master at sustaining interesting conversations with them.

Jane’s knowledge of grammar and Latin were ever present, and she was well-versed in classic literature, frequently making literary references in casual conversation. Jane’s appreciation of the natural world began while she was a child when, tutored by her father, she learned to canoe, to sail, to swim, and to cross-country ski. We remember when she hatched monarch butterflies, coaxed many a bat out of the house, and talked to the birds at the feeders. She particularly loved hummingbirds. Jane was an avid reader, always having a book or two underway, and she was fond of the poetry of Robert Frost, often reciting a line here and there. Jane truly enjoyed planning her gardens and starting seeds. She loved being outside working on her gardens and developing her perennial nursery beds.

In 1986 Jane and Harry winterized the family cottage on Brandy Pond in Naples, and moved to the home where they had enjoyed their summers and watched their children swim, boat, and water-ski. Papa Harry and Mama Jane soon welcomed grandchildren and great-grandchildren who participated in the same activities. Watching her children become parents and watching the little children grow brought her great joy. Happiness was a house full of little feet and a crowded table.

Jane was one of the organizers of the Naples Community Swimming program in the 1960s at the old Golf Course Beach, and she had played golf at the Naples County Club since she was young. She had been an active supporter of the Naples Public Library ever since she took out books there as a child.

In August 1998, Jane and Harry donated the Muddy River Bog Preserve at the Blue Rock in honor of her parents for a fishing dock with handicapped access. Jane wanted to ensure that the families of Naples had access to the lakes. She truly liked to spend time with her many friends in the community and with her family.

Jane is survived by her four children and their spouses, Nancy and Bill Doolittle, John and Lori Crowley, Roy Crowley and Elizabeth Olivier, and Catherine and Ben Walter; grandchildren: Tim and his wife Kayla, Peter and his fiancée Cordell Rodney and Amanda Doolittle; Abigail, Jordan, and Trevor Crowley; Meaghan and Matthew Crowley; Isabel and Iris Walter; great-grandchildren Connor, Audrey, and Quinn Doolittle; and extended family in Beals, Maine.

The family would like to thank the caregivers from LifeStages for their care and help over the past four years in both Portland and Naples, so Jane could stay at home as long as possible. Cam has been a special friend who took care of her with sureness and skill. They also want to thank the staff at The Cedars for caring for Mama Jane over the past three months. The attention and kindness to our mother and to the family is cherished.

A memorial celebration will be held on Friday, Oct. 19 at 7 p.m., at the Woodfords Congregational Church in Portland. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Jane’s memory to the Naples Public Library, PO Box 1717, Naples, ME 04055. Online condolences may be left for the family at hallfuneralhome.net


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