Louise Mary Garand of Hancock, N.H. died on May 3 at her home, surrounded by her loving family. She was 90.
She was born on Jan. 27, 1923, in New Bedford to Frank Clifford Kelley and Violet May Cowling-Kelley. She was the only daughter with five brothers. Louise was raised in Edgartown. There she met her husband of 72 years, Albert Leo Garand, an Island shepherd with a flock of 2,000 sheep. They married in 1941. While living on the Vineyard, Louise spent many days with her older brother Robert W. Kelley and his wife, Dot. She had fond memories of those days. One of her favorite stories was retelling the tale of when the house where they were all staying got wired for electricity. As a thank you, the electric company offered a choice of appliances: an electric iron or an electric waffle maker. They immediately chose the waffle maker!
World War II brought perhaps Louise’s saddest moment when she received news that her beloved brother, John Darrow Kelley, was missing in action. Her love and devotion for him stayed true until her final day.
For the past 67 years, Louise and her husband had lived in Hancock, N.H. They raised seven children together: Albert (now deceased), Laura Paradis, Nancy Driscoll, Phyllis Somes, John, and twins Betsey and Brenda.
In Hancock, Louise was a stay-at-home mother who delighted in baking goodies for her children to have after school. Living on a family farm had the advantage of having fresh cream, butter and vegetables. Louise spent countless hours in the kitchen canning the garden’s harvest for her family. Jellies and pickles were what the children enjoyed most.
Louise learned to sew at a young age from her mother who was a seamstress. Before she had the luxury of having a sewing machine, Louise would sit on her bed as a young teenager, cutting squares of cloth given to her by her neighbors and hand stitching a quilt. She made sure that all of her children knew how to use a sewing machine and needle and thread. For many years, she lead a 4-H sewing group in Hancock. Decades later, her heart was warmed by a former student who told Louise that her enthusiasm kept her interested in sewing.
Louise was also a huge supporter of the arts. When her younger children, John, Betsey, and Brenda, all chose to pursue careers in the arts, Louise encouraged them. In her later years, her own art was knitting. She knitted many sweaters, mittens, ornaments and other surprises for her children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews. Each gift unwrapped was an absolute delight which is treasured to this day.
She was an avid sports fan and loved the Boston Red Sox and Celtics. She spent many hours with her dear friend and fellow sports enthusiast Paul Lavoie Jr. discussing sports history, facts and strategies.
Louise endured a number of strokes, and the unwavering love and devotion of her daughters Betsey, Brenda and Nancy made it possible for her to spend her last days in her Hancock home. Her many kind and loving caregivers included Deb Carr and Brigitte Leger, longtime family friends Mary Wakeman and Dickie Patton and neighbors Jarvis and Bobbie Coffin and Sy Montgomery and Howard Mansfield.
In addition to her husband Albert, her children and their families including sons in law René Meyer and Mike Driscoll, Louise is survived by her beloved brother Robert Kelley of Edgartown, his daughter Shirley Cioffi and family, and many other nieces and nephews including Janet Edwards of Antrim and Laura, Kelley and Alexandra Akerley of Hancock. Her grandchildren are Jessica Mansell and her partner Jim, Michelle and Christopher Nye and Erik and Jenny Simonetta. Her great-grandchildren are Tyler and Samantha Mansell, Patrick, Gabrielle, and Nicholas Nye and Ava and Lucas Simonetta. Louise also was the adopted grandmother of the Surette girls, Heidi, Amy and Julie. She will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her including her granddogs, Mig, Mouton and Snow.
According to her wishes, there will be no funeral ceremony.
Jellison Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. Please visit jellisonfuneralhome.com.