Ann Staples Waldron

PORTLAND – Ann Staples Waldron died peacefully on Nov. 1, 2023. Born in Portland in 1939, daughter of Elizabeth Milliken Moody and Joseph Staples, she lived in Maine most of her life. A graduate of Chatham Hall, and Boston University, with a master’s degree from the University of Southern Maine, Ann devoted her life to education on one side of the desk or the other.

Ann was an active member of the community as a teacher and community volunteer. For over ten years she taught English at Waynflete School, where she served as chair of the English department and as middle school director. Ann really enjoyed the spontaneity and enthusiasm of middle schoolers, and their creative writing skills blossomed with her attention. Her classes acted out such scenes as Huck and Jim on a raft floating down the Mississippi, or chanting and circling the Witch’s Cauldron (a bucket of dry ice). Her students brought their own materials and ideas to enhance their performances. Ultimately, Ann was passionate about the English language, and enjoyed spreading awareness of proper English speech.

Ann’s creative eye brought her attention to Bernard Langlais’s sculptures, two of which she donated: a four-foot tall puffin stands at the second register of windows at Casco Bay Lines terminal, and a six-foot wide group of gulls looks windward in the Maine room at Falmouth Memorial Library. Her stone Cloaked Figure, by sculptor Roy Patterson, stands near the Merrill Memorial Library at the Main Street overpass in Yarmouth.

As a volunteer in the Portland area, Ann served on the board of the Maine Humanities Council, Maine Historical Society, the Colonial Dames, the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, the YWCA of Greater Portland, the Mitchell Institute, the Board of Visitors of the Maine Youth Center, and Trustees of Waynflete School where she received the Drake Award and became Trustee Emerita. Spending summers in Southwest Harbor, Ann joined the board of the Abbe Museum, the Friends of Acadia, and Acadia Senior College. When the Maine Community Foundation started the Hancock County Fund, Ann became its first Chair. For 25 years she served on the board of the United Society of Shakers, an organization she strongly supported.

Always a fan of sailing, in her 70’s Ann bought a small sailboat; she and her crew won the Southwest Harbor Luders class races for three years, for which she gave her crew the credit. Nearly every day she hiked many trails at Acadia National Park with her dog McIntosh controlling his own leash. For many years she boated waters around Acadia with her close friend Ed Blair, as they headed offshore seeking whales.

Ann was a frequent traveler. She covered the globe, exploring China in the early 1980s, riding a camel all day in Rajasthan, sailing the sapphire waters off Bora Bora, rafting down the San Juan River, and watching pink dolphins going down the Amazon.

Ann leaves her brother, Jeff Staples, and her sister, Betsey Harding, two nieces and two nephews, plus two grandnieces and three grandnephews, whom she asked to call her “GAA”, standing for Great Auntie Ann. Arrangements have been made for a celebration of Ann’s life at Shaker Village (half an hour north of Portland at 707 Shaker Road in New Gloucester) at 2 p.m., on Dec. 1, 2023.

Funeral arrangements have been made with Jones, Rich & Barnes Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Ann’s name to the Gulf of Maine Research Institute ( or to

Shaker Village


Ann Staples Waldron

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