Claire Elizabeth (Jacques) Rumney, 86, passed away peacefully this Thanksgiving evening, Nov. 26, 2020, after spending the day with her husband, Richard Rumney, and eldest daughter, Regina Gagnon, of West Gardiner.

She also leaves behind her three other children, Gary Gagnon of Mechanic Falls, Donna Richmond of Smithfield and Brian Callahan of Waterville, and five grandchildren.

Claire was the fourth child born to parents Frederick and Dora (Temple) Jacques in Waterville, and was predeceased by them and her three older brothers, Frederick Jr., Robert and James. Her youngest brother, John, is still a longtime resident of Waterville.

Claire was an avid reader of mysteries, liked the challenge of doing crosswords in pen, and was an expert puzzle maker. She was always looking to learn new things, too; in her golden years, she took up the piano. A lifelong champion of dogs, Claire opened her home as a safe haven for ones surrendered, working as an advocate to find them their forever homes.

She and Richard, who met at a dance hall in the '90s, were deacons of their church and also traveled often to Nova Scotia. At the start of their retirement, they sold their home and lived in an RV out in Arizona, enjoying the freedom of minimalist living.

While Claire had always dreamed of becoming a court stenographer in her youth, she set that aside to travel around the world with her first husband, a military officer, and focus her attention on raising her children and, eventually, her grandchildren. She was her family's personal cheerleader, encouraging them to pursue their dreams and praising them for every accomplishment along the way.

Even though her passing is a loss that is felt deeply by those who love her, she lives on not only in the memories that they carry, but also out in the world as they follow her Golden Rule standard in treating the people around them.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, Claire's kindness is paid forward by donations to local animal shelters, retirement homes or food banks.

Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at ripostafh.com.