SOUTH PORTLAND — Mary P. Mitchell, 78, of South Portland, died peacefully on Jan. 19, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease and a short illness following a fall.

Born on March 11, 1936, she was the younger daughter of Andrew J. Flaherty and Barbara C. (Davis) Flaherty. She grew up on Munjoy Hill in Portland, and graduated from Cathedral High School in 1955.

Mitchell was known for her straightforward manner, empathy and brilliant smile. She delighted in conversation and company. There was always time for a visit with friends, particularly if they were in need of a shoulder or sounding board.

She enjoyed camping, family get-togethers and special events such as weddings and graduations. Children were a constant source of delight for her, and she kept close to her nieces, nephews, and neighborhood youth.

Her faith was also a central part of her life. She was a lifelong communicant of Holy Cross Church in South Portland, participating in numerous parish activities and organizations as long as she was able.

Mitchell is survived by her husband of 54 years, Joseph; her sons, Stephen and wife, Christina, and Timothy and wife, Denise; her grandchildren, Alissa, Clancy, and Andrew; and sister, Barbara Connolly and husband, Roger, their children, Michael Connolly, Maureen Connolly-Cunningham, and their grandchildren, Meghan, John Patrick and Kathryn. Mitchell is also survived by a sister-in-law, Madeline (Mitchell) Wallace; a brother-in-law, Ralph Aceto; and many nieces and nephews.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Jan. 24 at Holy Cross Church, in South Portland. Burial will be held in New Calvary Cemetery, South Portland.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial donations be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter, 383 U.S. Route 1, Suite 2C, Scarborough, ME 04074.

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