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 Helena <I>Cavanaugh</I> Dowd

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Helena Cavanaugh Dowd

Helena Cavanaugh Dowd, 98, of Portland died at home on July 3, 2012.

She was born at home in Medford, Massachusetts on October 20, 1913 daughter of Annie Macdonald Cavanaugh & Matthew T. Cavanaugh.

She was educated in Malden Catholic grammar schools, The Villa in Goffstown, NH, and graduated from Rosary Academy in Watertown, MA in 1933.

After graduating from Lesley College in 1936, she was a grammar school teacher in Medford public schools until she married in 1937. She then taught at Miss Blakesley's School in Malden.

She was married to William J. Dowd, Jr. of Winchester, MA on February 9, 1937. In 1941, they were transferred by Graybar Electric Company of Boston to the Portland, Maine office. They were married for 24 years before his death in 1961. They resided at 24 Machigonne Street in Portland where they raised seven children and where Mrs. Dowd continued to live with her son Paul until the age of 98. She loved her home and neighborhood and enjoyed devoted friendships with many generations of neighbors. The dining room table at 24 Machigonne was a happy gathering place of friends, family, and neighbors for more than 70 years.

Mrs. Dowd was a member of both St. Joseph's and St. Patrick's Women's Sodality, the Women's Woodford's Club, as well as Cheverus High School Mother's Club. She was an active member of Lesley College's Alumnae organization and attended class reunions for 60 years.
She enjoyed travel and made several trips to Greece, England, and Germany.

Mrs. Dowd will be best remembered for her love of her children and grandchildren and their love of her. Her love of life and humor lives on in all of them.

Mrs. Dowd is survived by her six children, Barbara Dowd and her husband Emile Girard of Henderson, NV, Janet Bither and her husband James of Kennebunk Beach, William J. Dowd III and his wife Debi of Portland, Jeanne Day of Portland, Ann Hale and her husband Kenneth of Reading, MA, and Paul Dowd of Portland. She is also survived by her grandchildren, Sheila Hirai and husband Douglas of New Canaan, CT, Leigh Steele of Portland, Stephen Harrington and wife Nicole of Mattapoisette, MA, Amy Johnson and husband David of Kennebunkport, Noelle Heckscher and husband Jonathan of Villanova, PA, Carrie Palmer and husband Jeffrey of Belmont, MA, Courtney Dowd of Somerville, MA, Wills Dowd of Los Angeles, CA, Jessica Day of Denver, CO, Kristopher Day of Portland, Matthew Hale of Tempe, AZ, Jeffrey Hale of Everett, MA and Emily Hale of Reading, MA, She is also survived by sixteen great-grandchildren.

On behalf of Helena, the Dowd family would like to thank the DiMillo family of DiMillo's On the Water Restaurant and the Napolitano family of Bruno's Restaurant for all of the special attention, dignity, and kisses bestowed on Helena over the course of many years.

Besides her husband, William J. Dowd, Jr. she was predeceased by her son Gerard Dowd, second husband Charles Austin, a sister Anne Robinson, and brothers Rev. Leo Cavanaugh, O.S.A., and Richard Cavanaugh.

Visiting Hours will be held on Friday, July 6, 2012 from 5 – 7pm at A.T. Hutchins, LLC Funeral Home, 660 Brighton Avenue, Portland. A mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10am on Saturday, July 7, 2012 at St. Patrick's Church, 1342 Congress St, followed by interment at Calvary Cemetery, South Portland


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  • Created by: Tonya Sparks
  • Added: 5 Jul 2012
  • Find A Grave Memorial 93081265
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Helena Cavanaugh Dowd (20 Oct 1913–3 Jul 2012), Find A Grave Memorial no. 93081265, citing Calvary Cemetery, South Portland, Cumberland County, Maine, USA ; Maintained by Tonya Sparks (contributor 47077477) .