Janice Hope (Larrabee) Hawthorne
Janice Hope (Larrabee) Hawthorne, 77, lover of life, passed away unexpectedly Feb. 9, following the Feb. 2 death of her beloved husband and scotch foursome partner of 56 years, John G. Hawthorne Jr. She was born Sept. 15, 1936 as the elder child and only daughter of Howard Chelis Larrabee and Annie Chapman (Chalmers) Larrabee in Belfast, Maine.
Janice grew up in Belfast where she attended Crosby High School as a member of the class of 1955 and participated in every school activity and club available, including serving as senior class president. She attended Colby College for two years before taking a sabbatical to marry her high school friend and classmate John Hawthorne in 1957. As young entrepreneurs, Janice and John purchased Sebasticook Golf Club in Newport, Maine in 1958, and ran the small business while starting their own family of three children. After moving back to the Belfast area to be nearer to family, Janice completed her teaching degree at the University of Maine while raising her family and substitute teaching. Janice was hired by MSAD 34 as a kindergarten teacher at the Peirce School on Church Street, where she taught more than 1,000 children to read. Janice also taught third grade and was head teacher at the Anderson school. Noting the need for youth counseling, Jan went back for a masters degree at UMaine and became a district elementary school guidance counselor. “Mrs. Hawthorne” was beloved by the many children whose lives she touched throughout her career. The Hawthorne house on Cedar Street was full of neighborhood children, friends and classmates of her children, and to Janice it was “the more the merrier”.
It was Jan’s love of golf that first attracted John Hawthorne in 1955 and for 55 years they played golf together and taught their children the love of the game. She and John were formidable Scotch Foursome partners and they supported and participated in many a charity golf scramble. Janice was the first female president of Northport Golf Club and the Club Champion and Presidents Cup winner at both her Maine and Florida home courses. She was a member of and competed in the Women’s Maine State Golf Association and was a Maine State Golf Course Rater. While Jan had a definite competitive streak, it was the camaraderie, fun and laughs she and John enjoyed with their golfing friends on the 19th hole that she treasured the most. Jan loved to play cards and board games. At the Hawthorne house, a half completed jigsaw puzzle, a cribbage match, bridge, or hand and foot game could be found in play at any time. With John, Janice loved her champion dachshund racer, Mitzi. Janice’s greatest joy was being Mom to her children and Mame to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Janice was a civic minded woman, volunteering her time and beautiful spirit for the good of the community. She was a member of PEO, Eastern Star, a Hospice Volunteer, and a Guardian Ad-Litem. With John, she served as a leader for Rainbow for their daughters, a member of the Incorporators board of the Waldo County General Hospital and a weekend house parent at the Ronald McDonald House. She and John were familiar faces and supporters of local charity events for more than 50 years.
Janice was predeceased by her parents, Howard (1963) and Annie (2004), her step-father, Everard “Pete” Brierley (2005), her childhood caregiver, grandmother, Alice “Nanna” (Nickerson) Larrabee (1966), and the love of her life, her husband, John Hawthorne (2014).
Janice is survived by her children, son Scott and his wife, Kelley (Hornberger), of Belfast, Maine; daughter Alison and husband, Mike Rovinski, of Port St. Lucie, Fla.; and daughter Lisa Jo and husband, Jim Desmarteau, of West Palm Beach, Fla. “Mame” is also loved and survived by her grandchildren, Lisa Marie and husband, Aneal Virick, Kyle and wife, Kelly (Harnden), Alex and significant other, Lindsay DeBoer, and Michael, Allison, Christine and Mary Rovinski; and great-grandchildren, Mikayla and Drake Hawthorne, and Miles, Alka and Stella Virick.
A wake and celebration of Janice and John’s lives will take place at 18 Spring Street in Belfast on Thursday evening, Feb. 20, from 5 to 8 p.m. A memorial service will be held on Friday, Feb. 21, at 2:30 p.m. at Mathews Brothers Co. on Perkins Road in Belfast. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to either the John G. & Janice H. Hawthorne Scholarship Fund of the Belfast Rotary Club at 34 Mayo St., Belfast, ME 04915 or to the Waldo County General Hospital’s Oncology or Hospice unit. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at www.ripostafh.com. Arrangements are under the care of Riposta Funeral Home Belfast.