Myrtle C. Fletcher, 92, died Feb. 2, 2010.

Born in Derby July 7, 1917, the sixth of 10 children born to Horace and Jessie (Devereaux) Cunningham, her birth certificate listed her only as girl No. 2. So when she was 62, Mertie’s older sister, who had been present at her birth, had to sign an affidavit to prove Mertie’s identity.

She attended all 12 grades of school in the same schoolhouse in Stockton Springs, graduating in 1934. Because jobs were scarce, she did babysitting for a few years until she was hired by a Belfast shoe factory, first as a stitcher, then for 27 years as a packer, averaging 200 dozen shoes a day! After the last factory closed, she worked at the Deborah Lincoln Home on Cedar Street. “Everywhere I went, I made friends”, Mertie remembered, and those of us who knew her can certainly understand why.

For 60 years, until his death, she was married to Ernest Fletcher. Though one of their children died as a baby, they raised two daughters and a son to adulthood. Mertie made sure each child attended Sunday school and graduated from high school before she sent them off into the world.

While she was working, Mertie’s weekends were filled with children, cooking, washing and cleaning. She was a member of the Rebekah Lodge for 60 years, and Eastern Star for 55 years. Serving in several official capacities in both organizations, she said, gave her “a lot of confidence.” She was an active parishioner at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church, an altar guild member, a regular at suppers, book sales and fairs.

Mertie was an avid supporter of both the Boston Red Sox and the Patriots, played a mean game of cribbage and enjoyed keeping in touch with her many friends.

She was predeceased by her parents; her husband, Ernest Fletcher; seven siblings; and an infant daughter.

Survivors include her children, Regina Nickerson of Belfast, Ernestine Fraser of Belfast, and Buzzell Fletcher of Belmont; siblings Albert Cunningham of Houston and Orville Cunningham of Belfast; four grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews; and a special friend, Faith Roberts.

Spring burial will be at Grove Cemetery in Belfast.

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