Frances Roberts, 83, Was Island Town Accountant

Frances (Brown) Roberts, 83, of Oak Bluffs died Tuesday, Dec. 16, at the Windemere nursing home.

She was the wife of the late Malcolm Roberts and the former wife of Frederick Luce of West Tisbury.

She was born in Carver on Feb. 3, 1920, the daughter of James F. Brown and Olga S. Merritt. Born in the midst of a blizzard, she made the trip home in the sidecar of a motorcycle, thus beginning a life-long love of adventure, travel and foul weather.

Mrs. Roberts attended Chandler Secretarial School in Boston during the Great Depression; the Chandler placement office secured a job for her in Vineyard Haven at Brigg's Store, where she was a bookkeeper and where she met Mr. Luce. Over the years, she worked for her husband's business and in the county treasurer's office. She served as Tisbury town accountant from 1974 to 1987 and after her retirement as part-time town accountant for Chilmark.

She was the organist for her church, the Christian Science Society in Oak Bluffs, for more than 50 years, and also substituted as organist for the Edgartown Methodist Church and the Lambert's Cove Church, in addition to playing at many weddings.

She was a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, the Scottish Society and the Grange. She loved photography, poetry, traveling, knitting and sewing and yard sales. She especially enjoyed observing nature and animals and watching boats come and go from Oak Bluffs harbor.

She is survived by her daughter, Martha Luce of Oak Bluffs; her son, William Francis Luce of Presque Isle, Me., and two grandsons, Matthew Luce and Nathan Luce of Waterbury, Conn. She was predeceased by her brother, Kenneth D. Brown.

Her funeral service will be held at a later date. Arrangements are under the care of the Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home in Oak Bluffs. Donations may be made in her memory to the Christian Science Society, 123 New York avenue, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557, to the MSPCA, P.O. Box 2097, Edgartown, MA 02539, or to Hospice of Martha's Vineyard, P.O. Box 2549, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557.