Frances Hoye Photo courtesy of her family

Frances Hoye, a devoted wife and mother who worked in the catalog department at Sears for about 20 years, died April 9 after a period of declining health. She was 85.

Mrs. Hoye was remembered by her children this week as a strong and loving woman who lived life to its fullest.

A homemaker, she was married to Robert Hoye for 59 years. The couple lived in Cumberland Center, where they raised five children, including four boys.

Her oldest son, Kevin Hoye of Old Orchard Beach, laughed and cried as he shared sharing memories of sitting down for family dinners and getting into trouble.

“I remember coming home at one and two in the morning in complete disarray. She would take one look at me and start chasing me around the house with a broom,” Hoye said, laughing. “She knew I was up to no good. I had some hard times, but I’ve made my amends.”

Mrs. Hoye was further remembered, affectionately, as a complicated woman who wasn’t afraid to speak her mind.

“My mom was very difficult,” her son said, laughing. “If you ask any of my brothers, they would say the same thing. She was difficult, but she was very loving. She loved her family and she loved her husband.”

Another son, Dave Hoye of Fayettville, New York, reflected on his parents’ life together. He said they worked well as a team.

“She literally adored him,” Dave Hoye said. “He was the sun, the moon and the stars.”

The Hoyes met in Arlington, Massachusetts. She attended Saint Agnes School, then Arlington High School, as did he. They started dating after his service in the Air Force.

Her sister, JoAnne Fedor of Louisville, Colorado, said the Hoyes had a good life together. She said he took amazing care of her.

“They had this little dance,” Fedor said. “If she couldn’t see him within five minutes, she would yell out, ‘Bob! Where are you, Bob?’ And if he couldn’t see her, he would yell, ‘Fran, Fran where are you?’ Oh my god, it would drive me crazy. … They had a spark in their eyes from the time they met. They never lost that.”

Mrs. Hoye worked at Sears in the Maine Mall in South Portland, taking customers’ orders. She was a devout Catholic and longtime member of Sacred Heart Church in Yarmouth.

She was also an expert knitter, who made socks, mittens, and Christmas stockings for her grandchildren. She was also an excellent baker.

Later in life, the Hoyes lived in Naples, Florida, for about 20 years and visited Maine during the summers. There, she enjoyed going for walks and spending time with friends. Kevin Hoye spoke fondly about the years he and his wife, Nora, visited his parents.

“Their life was amazing,” he said. “They loved each other. They really did. He took very good care of her in their relationship.”

Mr. Hoye died on Dec. 26, 2013. About a year and a half ago, Mrs. Hoye went to live at Cape Memory Care in Cape Elizabeth. Kevin Hoye spent time with his mother every Sunday. On the Sunday before she died, he brought her flowers and she smiled at him. He helped her take a sip of water. She died two days later.

She is also survived by her children Brien and Bobby Hoye and Joanna Hoye Conner.

Her sons expressed comfort in knowing she was with their dad again.

“It meant a lot to me that I was able to be there for her because she was always there for me,” Kevin Hoye said.