Patricia "Patsy or Pat" Ann (Boisvert) Blaisdell, York, Maine.
Was welcomed into God's arms on Easter Sunday April 9, 2023 at home with her family, after fighting a long battle with her health.
Born to Ernest Roland Boisvert and Rita (LaRose) Boisvert on August 18, 1943, arriving 3 months early as a 2.0lb preemie at a time when the Hospital in Sanford Maine had received their first light bulb incubator. Her stubborn battle for life started the day she was born, with her faith in the Lord and her doctors and nurses growing year by year as she did. She was the granddaughter of Francis Boisvert & Marie (Landry) Boisvert (French Acadia Decent) and Obeline "Bella" (Lacasse) LaRose & Emile LaRose. Both Families calling Sanford, Maine home at the time. "Patsy" grew up next door to her Memere & Pepere LaRose and could not imagine her childhood without them. They were an integral part of her upbringing, especially with her Mother, Rita, working overtime in the "Mill's" and her Father in the Army (later needing constant care with severe health issues). She often commented they did not have much in "things", but what they did have was a lot of Love in family and Faith in God. She loved sharing stories of her family from her time with Pepere Larose in his workshop, to family gatherings in Memere LaRose kitchen and house. Sharing family traditions of Faith, Love, Laughter, and getting together as family.
She attended the local Catholic schools of Holy Family and St Ignatius. She had loved her schooling under the nuns, although she had mentioned having to learn to write with her right hand, since she was left handed. True to her nature, she did not complain, she would say it helped her later, by being able to do things with both hands without thinking. As a French Canadian attending Catholic School in Sanford, French was the primary language at home and in some Catholic classes, with Latin being the primary language at Church as well as many of school classes, so English was the less spoken third. This upbringing made her "open" to many cultures and languages. Later in life she would take classes to become familiar with Spanish, which is a culture she loved as well, as people would notice if visiting her house from the colors, patterns, and decorations she picked for different rooms in her home.
She loved school, but often health issues would affect her ability to attend. That would not stop her from picking up a book at a young age and reading. Reading would get her through a lot of hospital stays, and Illnesses at home throughout her life. Once when being bedridden at home as a young girl recovering from Spinal Meningitis outbreak that claimed many lives in Sanford in the 1950's. The doctors said "she would not make it through the night and if by some miracle she did survive she would never walk". She did make it through the night and was bedridden. Her father took the pair of roller skates they had saved and purchased for her for that Christmas, knotted up the laces from the first grommet of the boot to the end of each lace. Saying keep praying and work on these knots and with God's help, by the time you get the knots out you may be able to use these skates. It took over a year, but she would not only walk, but would use the skates and eventually be competing in roller skating dance competitions, in the era of Skating rinks being all over the east coast including along a small beach in York Maine referred to as "Short Sands". She would catch the eye of a young local boy who did not skate, but took the time to learn "enough to stand up" he would be the Love of her life. She would meet her future husband, Henry C. Blaisdell, at the age of 15 while skating at Short Sands Beach in what is currently called the FUN-O-RAMA, but at the time had been a skating rink. It is truly one of those love at first sight romances, but each of their families told them they should not date, since at the time a Catholic and a Protestant marrying was not something that was thought to last and unfortunately still being fought over in parts of the world. With the added burden of Patricia being from a French speaking Catholic Family and Henry being from an English speaking Protestant family in a town that only had a very small year round Catholic community, mainly thought to be for the summer tourists at the beach. They respected their family wishes, tried staying apart, but that time only proved to them they could not be without each other and continued dating for 4 years, before eventually making it obvious to their parents that their love for each other would truly carry them through life. Patricia would often say she was fortunate to be blessed to have James F. Blaisdell as a father-in-law that based his thoughts of a person on the person themselves and what they did, not necessarily the religion, group, etc. a person belonged to and a Mother-in-law that loved her son so much that she wanted him to be happy. Plus James would often say that Patricia was what his son needed. They were also fortunate to have known a Priest that would marry them, mainly because the priest knew Patricia's strong deep faith would not waiver and the love she carried. Being brought up the way she was, she would purposely plan the wedding to be approx. one month after her 20th birthday, so she would not be a "Teenage Bride". The wedding was held at St Ignatius Church in Sanford Maine September 14, 1963. A marriage that would last a lifetime proving faith and true love does make the difference!
Even though told by her doctor's not to try and have children due to her health issues, she would Ignore this advice (Which is not something she normally did, but showed the strong faith and love in family she had ) she would eventually be blessed with two children a son Thomas Henry in 1965 named after her brother she loved very much and of course Henry her husband....so when her son "did something wrong" she could yell "THOMAS HENRY"! and it would be his child up to no good.....They would be blessed with a daughter Cherie Ann in 1968. Patricia and Henry made a home filled with Love, Faith, Caring, Honesty, and Hard work. Henry and Patricia are true sole mates, always talking, sleeping and going out together. Their daughter would often get frustrated when asking to do something she knew one or the other would not permit, Patricia would ask what did your father say or Henry would say, what did your mother say!
Both Children were baptized at the Star of the Sea Church, which she always considered her new home church and it would always be dear to her even when St. Christopher's was opened and became the main church she volunteered at for whether helping in kitchen, setting up goods, help hosting events. Like the yearly "Antique show Fund Raiser" during Father White's time or the many bake sales and functions put on under Father Clancy. That said, when Christmas came around it was always back to Sanford for traditional Midnight Mass with her family at St. Ignatius until the passing of her Mom in 1996, her father having previously passed in 1971.
With the passing of her mother, she would host the family and friends Christmas Eve with Mass, traditional meal after and gifts. She also would set up her Christmas Village in the house that she had made in ceramic, and added pieces over the years. The family and friends would give her pieces over the years until she had a room full, that she and her sister-in-law, Charlotte Blaisdell Proctor, would invite friends, family, nursery school children and later on others that just heard about "the Lady with the Christmas Village”.
She enjoyed art from a young age and enjoyed the time she was able to attend Fred M. Hines art school. Majority of her paintings where seascapes but, with children she did less painting on canvas to more craft type artwork to involve kids and other people when becoming involved in making things out of ceramic and porcelain, eventually even talking her husband Henry into installing a kiln and mold area so she could teach at home for kids and adults. Even though her family and friends considered her an artist, she never did, although she loved to talk and be with people she considered "real" Artists. She loved the creative part and the "doing" of it. When seeing what she could do whether painting on canvas, ceramic, or other media, it was generally only her family, a few friends and her doctors knew that this woman that loved the color of art was legally blind in one eye since her time in the incubator as a preemie, and needed glasses to drive with the other.
She would find another passion, when trying to get her son to join Cub Scouts. Like her Son, she loved animals but was naturally very shy around people (Except when a person needed a helping hand...still quiet), so this was why she was trying to get her son involved, unaware at the time, she would stay involved longer than her son. She became a Den Mother for Den 2 Troop 301 Cub Scouts in 1972. Would become lifelong friends with other Mothers and leaders. Always looking up to Virginia and Dexter Spiller, taking over the Den leader Coach Job from "Ginny Spiller" when Ginny moved up to the Boy Scout Committee and later joining Ginny on the committee and attending the regional and state scout committee meeting. She would stay active with the committee into the mid 1980's and believing strongly in the Boy Scout traditions, laws, oath....granted her beliefs were there as a child long before she knew the words of the Scouting oath...especially the section "do my duty to God and my Country and to Help people at all times" and traditions. She grew up with those words....granted in French and Latin, but still those words.
Patricia loved animals of all types and always said she was blessed to have moved on Henry's Family farm. She loved her gardens around the house and the birds they would attract. Family, friends and guests would enjoy a meal, or maybe just a "Tea" on the back porch enjoying the peaceful gardens, the sound of the birds and flight of butterflies enjoying her gardens....she especially enjoyed it when the cows and calves were moved from the spring pasture to the field behind her house. It is a summer fall tradition for family and friends helping with farm chores to share meals on the porch....weather permitting.
One of her greatest strengths even when sick herself, was caring and trying to care for others. She was an amazing caregiver often opening her house to many members of the family to stay to recover instead of being sent to a "rest" home or being alone at home. Her Mother in law would eventually move in and stay with them eventually having her own attached apartment for privacy, but the Dutch door between was open far more than closed (often forgetting there was a door). Patricia took care of her, as she did her mom, many aunts and cousins from many sides of the family.
She had an amazing gift to listen and be patient with those with both physical and mental illness. She was able to make them feel comfortable even at a very young age, when visiting her father at the Togus Military hospital. Other patients would see a young girl not afraid, with a very caring spirit. They may just sit with her in an outside garden, some would speak, others just enjoyed seeing a young person not afraid or wanting to run away. All looked forward to her next visit, almost as much as her dad. Unfortunately, even when home from Togus her dad would need constant care and supervision. Well before she became a teenager, she was the one looking after and caring for her dad. Her mom, working as much overtime at the mills as possible to try to make ends meet, was leaving early, home late, and almost always working Saturdays as well. Patricia helping and caring for family was the main focus and responsibility of her life from a very young age.
She was blessed to have some of the best doctors, not just because of their skill, but also because of their faith and friendship over the years. She truly loved and respected her doctors, nurses, and caregivers she knew through York and Portsmouth Hospitals and the many others from Portland Maine to Massachusetts that helped save her life and keep her going time after time. They were especially welcoming to the family, since most recognized Patricia always improved when friends and family visited, especially just a simple kiss from her husband Henry, would change her vitals even when not awake. Because of this they would allow family members and good friends to spend the night in her room. Henry would be there every day and later when retired, was known to bring in their little dog in a basket to boost her spirits as well as many others in the hospital. Thank you to all the caregivers that took special care of Patricia and her family on the many days, weeks and even months she was hospitalized over the years and right up to the night she passed into the Lord's arms. Truly amazing people and we are blessed by their Friendship and Care.
For Patricia, as for what to be remembered for, it would be for her Faith, Love, and Caring of Family and Friends that have given meaning to her life. Those things have made her a very thankful, beloved, and blessed person.
Patricia was predeceased by her parents Rita and Ernest, brothers Thomas and Gerard. She is survived by her husband Henry Blaisdell, her son Thomas and his wife Doris Blaisdell, daughter Cherie Blaisdell and her partner Joe Fox. Two Grandsons: Thomas Conlon and Timothy Fox-Blaisdell. Many nieces, nephews, grandnieces, grand nephews, cousins, and friends, with many being more like sisters, brothers, daughters, and sons!
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