Eleanor Soule Johnson

CHEBEAGUE ISLAND--Eleanor Soule Johnson, 87, died unexpectedly at her home on Chebeague Island, Saturday, September 25th.

Eleanor was born in Portland, Maine, January 10, 1912, a daughter of Horace Soule, a former Portland Policeman, and Laura Franklin Fischer from Sheet Harbor, Nova Scotia. She grew up on Vesper Street in Portland and attended Portland schools. She summered on Chebeague with her family and later met and married Sherman Johnson of Portland who also summered on Chebeague. They lived for a short time in Kennebunk, Wells, and Portland and in 1946 made Chebeague their permanent home.

Eleanor (affectionately known as Baa) was interested in many things. She enjoyed collecting antiques and was especially proud of her colored cruet collection. She enjoyed reading mysteries and watching her backyard birds. She had many memorable hours with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She had a deep interest in life and would lie awake nights with concern for the welfare of her family, friends, and neighbors. Eleanor will be well remembered and greatly missed by all.

She was a member of the Chebeague Historical Society, the Chebeague Island Council, and the Maine Historical Society.

Her husband, Sherman Roberts Johnson, died in 1987.

Surviving are two sons, Peter and Stephen of Chebeague Island, and one daughter, Pamela Johnson of Yarmouth, Maine; eleven grandchildren, Christopher Rich, Sherman Rich, Jon Rich, Patti Rich, Debra Willson, Viktoria Johnson, Denis Johnson and Darya Johnson, of Chebeague, Kim Martin of Attleboro, MA, Brenda Klenda of Yarmouth, and Rebecca Koppmann of Cumberland, RI; and nine great-grandchildren, Danielle Rich, David Rich, Stephen Rich, of Chebeague, Stephanie, Bradley, Christopher, Nathaniel, and Brenna Martin of MA, Luke Klenda of Yarmouth.

A service will be held Wednesday, September 29th, 1:30 PM at the Chebeague Island United Methodist Church. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Chebeague Island Library or the Chebeague Rescue.







Eleanor at Doris' sixth birthday party!

Top Row: Marion, Doris Bryan Croudis, ELEANOR, Eloise Hamilton, Raymond Hamilton, Bessie Hamilton
Bottom Row: Gladys Bowen Bennett, Richard Bowen, Myrtis Soule, Rufus Soule

Eleanor "Baa"

  She was the scent of lavender, and crisply pressed sheets, the ticking of a grandfather clock in the corner. She was white hair, and soft skin gently wrinkled by the passage of time. Her house was home and her cupboards always open.

She was etiquette, grace, and propriety that hid a devilish wit and deeply ingrained beliefs that emerged as she aged; shyly at first, then with an abandoned glee as the polite trappings of society lost their hold. The child in her new pinafore who longed to romp and roll through the mud finally set free.

She was our mother and grandmother, the center of us all; a soft heart hidden behind a wall and a will of granite, and we clung to her like barnacles when the waters rose too high.

In later years she feared becoming a burden to us, never realizing the weight she carried for us. She left us as she wished, quietly and with no fanfare; her bed made and dishes washed, the burden passed on to another as strong as she.

by Kim Martin