Jennie Pilley Hanks
Jennie Pilley Hanks, 98, of Thornton Hall, and formerly of Woodside Road, died on Wednesday, Aug. 7, at the Mid Coast Senior Health Center in Brunswick.
She was born in Belfast on Dec. 19, 1914, the daughter of Calvin Pilley, of Brooks, and Mary Maroney, of Lisdoonvarna, County Clare, in Ireland.
Jennie was proud of her Irish heritage and was distinguished by her long red hair. She attended Belfast schools and was a 1932 graduate of Crosby High School. She traveled by steamship from Belfast to Boston and on to Worcester by street car to attend and graduate from Becker Junior College in 1934 with a degree in business.
Upon returning to Belfast, Jennie was employed at the Emergency Relief Administration and later as Agricultural Conservation Clerk in the county court house.
In 1938 she married Bradbury Hanks, of Augusta, and they settled in Brunswick. Bradbury, her husband of 53 years, predeceased her on Sept. 20, 2001.
During the early years in Brunswick, Mrs. Hanks cared for her growing family. Mrs. Hanks was passionate about her religion and her politics. Jennie worked as a civil servant at BNAS as an accountant in the supply department for more than 20 years.
Jennie was fond of animals and had a special affection for dogs. She enjoyed playing the piano, singing, doing crosswords and reading biographies. Jennie was a loyal member of “Red Sox Nation” and attended many games.
In recent years she enjoyed being the family matriarch and encouraged the next generation’s endeavors. While living at Thornton Hall, Mrs. Hanks made many new friends and participated in numerous activities.
Jennie is survived by three daughters: Nancy Hanks Laitala and her husband Rt. LCDR Theodore Laitala; Mary Hanks White and her husband Dr. Houghton White and Elizabeth Hanks Leonard. A son Stephen Hanks. A sister Margaret Pilley White and her daughter Jo Anne White Quittmeyer and her husband George Quittmeyer all of Brunswick.
Thirteen grandchildren Ian Laitala, Jennie Laitala Driscoll, Kerry Laitala, Shannon Laitala Harney, Lucy White, Dr. Mary White, Dr. Sean White, James Phin White, Zachary Leonard, Jessica Leonard Kuatov, Matthew Leonard, Ethan Leonard and Catherine Hanks Shields. Also survived by 11 great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
In addition to her husband she is predeceased by her brother John Michael Pilley, the first solider from Belfast to die in combat in World War II. An infant son John Michael Hanks; sister Loretta Aubertine and two great grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Monday, Aug. 12, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Charles Borromeo Church-All Saints Parish, 132 McKeen St., Brunswick with a reception in the parish hall. Interment will follow in Grove Cemetery in Belfast.
Jennie’s family extends its thanks and sincere appreciation to the staff at Thornton Hall, Parkview Hospital, Mercy Hospital and the Bodwell Unit at the Mid Coast Senior Health Center for their care and support.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to the Coastal Humane Society, 30 Range Road, Brunswick, Maine, 04011. Arrangements are by Stetson’s Funeral Home, 12 Federal St., Brunswick, where memorial condolences may be expressed at stetsonsfuneralhome.com.