Mary Watson Colter Was a Teacher in Edgartown

Mary L. Watson Colter, 82, of Ipswich, wife of Robert W. Colter, died on Wednesday, June 18, in the Beverly Hospital following a sudden illness.

Born in Lynn on July 21, 1920, the daughter of the late Arthur C. and H. Gladys Face Watson, she was brought up in Lynn and was a 1938 graduate of Lynn English High School. She went on to attend Salem State Teachers College, graduating in 1942 as a middle and high school business teacher. She taught in the Plymouth, N.H., High School before teaching in Edgartown, where she met her husband. They married in 1945, and following Mr. Colter's discharge from the service, they made their home in Edgartown. They later lived in Lynn, and moved to Ipswich in 1956.

Mrs. Colter was a longtime member of the First Church in Ipswich, where she had served for years as clerk and parish secretary. She has been the editor of the church newsletter for many years, was active in the women's guild, sang in the choir and was a leader of the Brownies and Girl Scouts. An avid quilter, she belonged to the New England Quilters Guild, the New England Quilters Museum in Lowell, Common Thread Quilters Group in Topsfield and was a charter member of the Mayflower Quilters in Ipswich. She also enjoyed traveling with her family and with the Ipswich Friends of the Elderly Travel Club.

In addition to her husband of 58 years, she is survived by four sons, Robert Colter of Seaside, Calif., Duncan Colter and his companion, Betty Stewart, of Ashfield, Stuart Colter and his wife, Michele, of Peabody, Norman Colter and his wife, Pamela, of Ipswich, and two daughters, Janis Colter and Martha Colter, both of Ipswich. She is also survived by seven grandchildren: Bryan Colter of Seaside, Calif., James Blanken of Ipswich, Brandon Blanken of Arlington, Vt., Courtney Blanken of Ipswich, Coreana Colter of Ipswich, Shannon Colter of Ipswich and Heather Colter of Ipswich; two brothers, Russell Watson of Peabody and Richard Watson of Wolfboro, N.H., and several nephews, nieces, cousins, great-nephews and great-nieces.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, June 23, in the First Church in Ipswich. Visiting hours are Sunday, June 22, from 4 to 8 p.m. in the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home, 6 High street, Ipswich. Interment in the Pine Grove Cemetery in Lynn will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in her name may be made to the First Church Memorial Fund, First Church, Meetinghouse Green, Ipswich, MA 001938.