April 25, 2013

Feature obituary: Anne Emerson, 88, delivered countless babies, embraced life

By Melanie Creamer mcreamer@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

GORHAM – Anne Emerson was a dedicated registered nurse at Westbrook Community Hospital, who worked the night shift and helped usher hundreds of babies into the world.

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Anne Emerson

Family photo


Each day the newsroom selects one obituary and seeks to learn more about the life of a person who has lived and worked in Maine. We look for a person who has made a mark on the community or the person's family and friends in lasting ways.

Though her nursing work was deeply important to her, nothing topped her love for family and the activities that fueled her passion for life.

"She was a fantastic lady," said her son, John Emerson, Sr., of Gorham. "She was probably the most capable, accomplished, and busiest woman I have ever known. She never wasted a minute of her life. She was always doing something."

Mrs. Emerson died on Monday at The Cedars in Portland. She was 88.

In 1962, she joined Westbrook Community Hospital as a registered nurse. She worked the night shift, 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. in obstetrics, and delivered many babies for tardy physicians.

"She was a true nurse in every sense of the word," her son said. "She loved caring for people, not just delivering medications and giving shots. She loved giving people comfort."

When her shift was over at 7 a.m., Mrs. Emerson went home to sleep for a few hours before embracing the day.

She was a loving mother of three children, who lived each day as if it were her last. She had a competitive and determined spirit that soared. She had passions for golf, bowling and swimming. Her son said she went swimming every day in Union River Bay in Trenton, where she had a summer camp. She did so up until last summer.

Mrs. Emerson was also an accomplished artist and musician. She had a "pitch perfect" alto voice and played several instruments throughout her life. Until six months ago, she played the euphonium in the Casco Bay Concert Band.

She also sang in the choir at the First Parish Congregational Church for more than 50 years.

"We were in awe of our mother. We really were," her son said. "She had an amazing talent. She was incredible."

She was a loving wife of the late Horton W. (Bill) Emerson, Jr. They were married for 47 years and raised three children. She was remembered by them Wednesday as a devoted and supportive mother, who inspired them to be more. Her son said she had a "quiet faith," and led by example.

"Church was her focus and so was her family," he said. "I admired her commitment to us and her ability to pursue all of her other interests. She did a tremendous amount of work in the community and a tremendous amount of things on her own. She was an incredibly strong and driven women. Her goal in life was to make sure that she didn't miss an opportunity. She did it all. Believe me."


Staff Writer Melanie Creamer can be contacted at 791-6361 or at:



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