Laurie Hadlock

FREEPORT – We lost our dear Laurie in the early morning of April 20, 2020 to pneumonia, a complication of her Parkinson’s disease which was first diagnosed in 2010. She called Parkinson’s “a tiny diagnosis” and approached it with awe-inspiring courage, optimism and tenacity. A celebration of her art and life will be held from May 8-10 in the Hadlock’s barn. Details at Laurie Parlee Hadlock was born Dexter on May 6, 1958 to Richard and Barbara Parlee. Growing up in Newport, she was a passionate student, brownie, girl scout, cheerleader and majorette. She graduated from Nokomis High School as president of her class, and later from Portland School of Art (now Maine College of Art) to become an endlessly creative, multi-medium artist, most known for her paintings of the Maine Coast. She loved the ocean, and with little sailing experience was baptized as a fearless bow-woman on her soon-to-be-husband Parker’s J24, Airplay, racing throughout the Northeast, and cruising from the Harraseeket River to Roque Island on this small sailboat.She and Parker built their home and life atop a ledge in Freeport where you could see Halfway Rock out the front and Mt. Washington out the back. She wore out a spade hand shovel cleaning bedrock to receive the foundation (that they placed on their honeymoon), cleared an unfathomable amount of trees for fields and cut in a driveway that is better as a bobsled run. After building a few more barns and boathouses on the property, her attention turned to raising kids.She would tell you that her life’s work was her two children, Ilka and Finn, with whom she created art, read books, cooked, sailed, rowed, explored islands, ice skated, skied, waterskied, bushwhacked, and generally inspired with everything she did. When they started playing organized sports, Laurie became a diehard ski racing, hockey and lacrosse fan, braving windy, icy slopes, rinks and lax fields across New England to cheer on Ilka and Finn from middle school through college.Summers were spent cruising the Maine Coast, sailing each weekend from a mooring in Tenants Harbor (first on Airplay and more recently on her lobster boat, The Laurie H). To remember Laurie in her happiest place would go something like this: Crisp fall day with a northwest breeze, beam reaching through Merchants Row, huge smile on her face, and a firm hand on the tiller.Laurie’s art has been featured in 40 exhibits, and lives in the homes of admirers around the world. She was the organizer of “Art Camp,” a 15-year tradition in which eight artist friends would gather on a Maine island and create for a week, culminating in a show and gorgeous collection of work. Her inspiring and beautiful portfolio, blog and book can be viewed at – a gift to have these pieces of her with us and accessible to all.Laurie’s family would like to thank her unstoppable crew of friends and caregivers, “L’s Angel’s”, Jen, and for the last 18 months, Cathy, who brought love and light into her life, day after day. Also, to the team at Midcoast Hospital, who gracefully helped us understand the seriousness, likely rapid decline, and did everything to facilitate her comfort and expedited return home for her final hours, surrounded by her family. Laurie had a smile that lit up the universe, a twinkle in her eye that meant mischief, and a sense of adventure that never faded. She lives on through her art, her family and in the hearts of those who were lucky enough to know her.As she would sign off, “Listen, be well, dance often.” In lieu of flowers or gifts, donations can be made in her honor to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, or to the children’s art program of your choice – where beauty leaps from the easels and kids can “PAINT BIG.”

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