SACO — When Evelyn Stackpole’s daughter graduated from high school, she asked for a dog.

Not just any dog — a Doberman pinscher.

“I don’t know why, but I came up with a Doberman,” Susan Skaggs said. “That was Diamond.”

Diamond turned out to be Mrs. Stackpole’s introduction to a breed that quickly became devotion. Since the 1980s, she spent much of her free time raising, training and showing her dogs, Stackpole’s daughter said.

Mrs. Stackpole died Thursday at age 78, leaving behind not only her family, but Glory and Paige, the last of her Dobermans.

As a child and young adult, Mrs. Stackpole’s free time was dedicated to her horses. She trained them and taught riding, said her sister, Charlene Stone Frost.

“She had all three of her children in the saddle when they were just barely able to walk,” and all three went on to be champion riders, Frost said.

But she did not push her children. “She was always supportive in a positive way. It was always fun,” Skaggs said.

“As a mother, she was devoted to her children,” said her daughter, Linda LuCante. “Whatever our passion was, that was her passion also.”

Her daughters remembered how she made costumes for performances, baked treats for bake sales and was a mother to all of their friends. Whenever something needed to be done, she volunteered her time — along with her husband’s, LuCante said.

Mrs. Stackpole kept busy, not only with her children, horses and dogs, but with crafts such as glass-etching, ceramics and quilting, and with cooking. Her dinner rolls and peanut butter fudge were hard to beat, LuCante said.

“She gave me and my daughter peanut butter fudge lessons one afternoon,” her sister said. “We made a batch under her supervision, her watch, but it didn’t taste like hers.”

With her children grown, Mrs. Stackpole dedicated her time to her dogs. She was a member of many regional clubs, and was a founding member of the Pine State Doberman Pinscher Club with her friend Penny Cary.

“Other than her children, her dogs were her kids,” Cary said, remembering a number of trips the two took across the Northeast and Canada for dog events.

Mrs. Stackpole was competitive — she set goals for herself and her dogs.

“She had several personal goals as it applied to the dogs,” Cary said. “She just accomplished one. It was to have Paige pass a Doberman temperament test. She passed with flying colors.”

It was her dogs’ calm temperament that Mrs. Stackpole was most proud of, Cary said. It showed in recent visits to local nursing homes with Glory.

“She took pride in the fact that the Doberman pinscher could go into a nursing home and be so loving and calm,” Cary said. “They had a great following.”

Staff Writer Emma Bouthillette can be contacted at 791-6325 or at:

[email protected]