BRUNSWICK — Louise Van Thorpe, age 95 died on Tuesday June 13th at Mid- Coast Hospital in Brunswick. She was born in Deer Creek, Oklahoma on March 1, 1922. She was a proud winner of the Joshua Chamberlain Award and Phil Harris Award.

Here is part of a BIO Louise wrote:

“I’m a native of Deer Creek, Oklahoma. My father settled Indian Territory on the opening of the Cherokee Strip on the Oklahoma-Kansas border, at Pond Creek, Oklahoma. He lived on the land the required four years, and eventually settled in Deer Creek, a small town on the Oklahoma-Kansas border.

I had 14 brothers and sisters (7 boys and 7 girls of which I was the 6th girl and the 11th child) and we were all college graduates. We graduated from various colleges and universities all over the U.S. While I was at the University of Oklahoma, two brothers were at Oklahoma State. My sister was at the Metropolitan Opera after a four-year scholarship at Julliard.

My father’s family came from Valkenburgh, Holland and settled in New Amsterdam (New York City) in 1620. They lived at what is now where the United Nations Building is – it was the back gate of the city. They moved to Kinderhook, NY and finally to Oklahoma. Dad’s great Uncle was President Martin Van Buren. Frank van Valkenburgh, a cousin, was the Skipper of the USS Arizona when it was sunk at Pearl Harbor. My mother was from Illinois where her uncle was a state senator. Most of her family migrated to the Northwest. Her uncle was a brother of General Greene of the Rhode Island Airport.

While at the University of Oklahoma I met my husband, a Navy Flight Instructor at one of two Navy Bases in Norman, OK. We traveled all over the country on Navy Orders and finally returned to Maine – his home state.

I started working at the Brunswick Naval Air Station at what was then a “Station Hospital” in 1954. I transferred to the Housing Division where I was the Housing Referral Officer. I got to visit every ship built at BIW at their homeport – meeting with crews and instructing them in what they could expect in Maine and in the Bath- Brunswick area – along with a “dog and pony show”. I have received many awards and plaques from these many ships and from Squadrons, and the Marine Corps presented me with three awards for outstanding service when it was stationed at BNAS. The Military Community Council presented me with the JOSHUA CHAMBERLAIN AWARD in 1993 (the second award to a woman). The Brunswick Rotary club presented me with the prestigious “Paul Harris Award”.

I retired in 1989 and spent time volunteering in Civic, Navy, Hospital, Welfare, Red Cross and others causes I feel are worthwhile and where I can help others.”

Louise spent her last few years at Dionne Commons. She had a great life and never stopped looking for adventure and trying different things. She was proud of all her children’s accomplishments and loved jumping in a car to drive cross country to spend time with them. Or sharing special times with Meredith and her grandsons and their families in Maine.

She is survived by her five children, Mike Thorpe and his wife Nadie of Hawaii, Harry Lee Thorpe of Nevada, Jon Thorpe and his wife Priscilla of Nevada, Meredith Herzog and her husband Bill of Brunswick and Curtis Thorpe and his wife Sherri of Oklahoma. She had 12 grandchildren and many great-grandchildren who she was very proud of.

A service will be held at Stetson’s Funeral Home, 12 Federal Street on Saturday, June 24 at 1:30 p.m. in Brunswick, ME 04011.

Memorial Donations may be made to the American Red Cross, PO Box 37839, Boone, IA 50037-0839

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