August 28, 2010
Nathalie Corrigan of Shelburne, NH and originally from Westbrook, ME, passed away on August 28, 2010. She was 89 years old. Nathalie was a wife, mother and homemaker first. She was also a singer of considerable local reputation. Her gorgeous soprano, a sonic blend of heaven and Earth, the voice of her maturity, had the power to make entranced congregations weep. She sang also with the White Mountain Trio and the North Country Chorus and several of her songs are registered with the Library of Congress. Her talent for music was passed on to granddaughters Kristen and Shelley Corrigan. She supported the school and sporting activities of her children and grandchildren, and for many years the Boston Red Sox didn’t turn a double play without her rapt attention, and only a natural disaster could cause her to miss a televised ice skating or Olympic event.
She enjoyed word games, songwriting, reading and her home, where she put up the American flag each day and kept things sparkling, as if always ready for guests. In recent years, she approached gardening with devotion, helping to beautify the grounds at the Wildberry Inn, where she lived for many years with her eldest son Bob as his wife Jackie, longtime teachers at Gorham High School. In the 1950s and 60s, her favorite vacations were those summertime weeks at the family’s rustic camp on Concord Pond in Woodstock, ME. Before her husband died in 1970, the couple enjoyed wandering New England in their small RV. But Nathalie seemed invested in home and family and most of all centered her life around the domestic. The young people in her family particularly loved her understanding of their excitement at Christmastime, since she cherished the joys of that season for her whole life. Mother to four, grandmother to four, and great-grandmother to four, she was for 26 years the wife of the late Harry E. Corrigan, a Gorham, NH native and longtime employee of the Portland Pipe Line. Her church affiliations included the First Congregational Church of Gorham and, in recent years, the Dummer Community Church, where her son-in-law, Malcolm Longnecker, is a pastor.
After loosing her husband, she worked for several years at the former House of Style in Berlin. In the years around World War II, she was employed in her hometown of Westbrook as a dental assistant to Dr. Ralph Whitney. Nathalie grew up on her family’s small truck farm with its tiny but bustling farmstand on Conant St; the 1789 homestead, one of the first homes in Westbrook, is still occupied by her surviving sister, Eleanor Conant Saunders.
Born April 14, 1921 to Percy and Eva Laidlaw Conant, Nathalie graduated from Westbrook High School in 1939. She met her future husband when he boarded at the farm during the construction phase of the Portland Pipe Line, a company he stayed with the rest of his life, except for a four-years stint in the Army Air Corps during World War II. After the war, the growing family lived for short periods in South Portland and Raymond, ME before making a home for many years in Shelburne.
Nathalie is predeceased by her parents and her sister, Esther Conant Smith of Greely, CO. Surviving are her older sister, Eleanor Conant Saunders of Westbrook, son Robert E. Corrigan of Shelburne and North Conway, son Michael T. Corrigan of Bridgton and Lewiston, ME, daughter Kathleen Corrigan Longenecker of Gorham, daughter Martha Corrigan Macintosh of Las Vegas, NV, grandchildren Gregory Corrigan, Kristen Corrigan, Shelley Corrigan, Elizabeth Longenecker, and two nieces.
There will be no calling hours and a private family service will be held at a later date. Donations, in lieu of flowers, may be sent to the Harry Corrigan Memorial Scholarship, c/o Dollars for Scholars, 120 Main St., Gorham, NH, 03581. The Bryant Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.