Phebe B. Durgin
February 21, 1940 – May 17, 2020
It’s the end of a long goodbye for Phebe – wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend. Our family has been told that the pain of experiencing the loss of our mom and all that she was, little by little over the past several years, will recede to make way for all of the happy memories from years gone by. For now, there is profound relief that she is finally at peace. Mom, we love you and will miss you, always.
Phebe, daughter to Georgia A. McLaughlin Stephenson and Samuel A. White, was born in Mattawamkeag, Maine. With early ties to the Bingham and Moscow communities, Phebe and her family traveled extensively during her younger years, eventually returning while Phebe was still in high school. She rejoined her classmates and friends, and went on to marry her friend and neighbor, John D. Durgin, of Moscow, Maine. This past January 27th marked their sixty-second wedding anniversary.
For over fifty-nine years, Phebe and John made their home in Bingham, or more specifically Concord. With a spectacular view of the Kennebec River, Phebe enjoyed watching all of the river habitat, especially the eagles, frequently soaring above the river, hunting for fish. She was quite an animal lover, and over the years nursed many hurt birds and squirrels back to health. Phebe had a way with plants and flowers - especially ‘roses’. With John’s help, she created an elaborate rose garden on the side of their garage that was stunning enough to draw in onlookers to check it out. She also loved birds, especially hummingbirds, or “hummies” as she called them, and kept her many bird and hummingbird feeders well stocked. She was an avid shopper - found excitement in finding that special ‘something’ and knew the art of finding the absolute best price. Phebe was very family-oriented - loving and generous to her family and friends - and anxious to ‘feed’ everyone whether they were hungry or not. ‘Nana’ absolutely doted on her grandchildren, was their most loyal sports fan, and so proud of all of their academic and personal accomplishments.
While her daughters were young, Phebe was employed at the Quimby Veneer Mill, and as a cashier at Jimmy’s Market before transitioning into banking. For well over twenty years, Phebe worked as a teller, and then a head teller, at the Bingham branch that was owned by Merrill Trust Company when she first entered the industry. Phebe was a real whiz with numbers and often assisted customers and friends with balancing their personal checkbooks in her spare time.
One of Phebe’s part-time employment positions was sought for a specific purpose: so that she and John could purchase a camp lot on Embden Pond. She was thrilled when they were able to purchase a lakefront lot and went on to build a small camp from the ground up in the early seventies. This camp continues to be a focal point for John and the family, and it was an especially beloved place for Phebe throughout the years and even a source of solace as her illness set in. She also delighted in exploring the Maine coast and so many family memories are tied to idyllic trips to Reid State Park and Popham Beach – beachcombing and enjoying Maine’s beautiful coastline with her grandchildren.
Phebe is pre-deceased by she and John’s beloved daughter, Joanne, whom they lost as a young child, mother, Georgia, father, Sam, father of her heart, Harold Stephenson, mother-in-law, Ivy, father-in-law, Henry, and all of her siblings and their spouses: brother, Lee, sister-in-law, Trudy, brother James, brother Samuel Jr., sister-in-law, Cheryl, sister, Jean and brothers-in-law, Bill Judd, Camille (Zounne) Gervais, Waldo Lockard, Carl Hensley and half-brother-in-law Julian Leach.
The loving family whom Phebe leaves behind are her husband, John, daughters, Jill Durgin Pierce and husband, Sterling, Joy Durgin West and husband, Todd, granddaughters, Hayley and Taylor Pierce and Samantha West, grandson, Joshua West, great granddaughter, Delilah Phebe, step-grandson, Eric Hatfield and family, sister-in-law, Betty Lockard Hensley, half-sister-in-law, Nancee Leach, along with many cousins, nieces, nephews, and great nieces and nephews.
Phebe’s family would like to thank all of the kind caregivers who provided compassionate support during the past three plus years. We’ve encountered many ‘angels’ along Phebe’s journey, and would like to especially recognize Denise from Glenridge - the Cove, and Gil from Maine General Hospice. Mere words cannot express how truly grateful we are.
In lieu of flowers, Phebe’s family asks you to please consider offering your support to Alzheimer’s/Dementia research to help other families who are involved in this struggle.
A graveside service will be held at Robinson Memorial Cemetery on Saturday, June 13, 2020 at 2:00pm with Reverend Mark Tanner presiding.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of Giberson Funeral Home and Cremation Services. To read the online obituary, send a condolence to Phebe's family and to share on social media please visit www.gibersonfuneralhome.com
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