Lincoln drug counseling center’s founder dies

Posted Nov. 18, 2008, at 9:52 p.m.
Last modified March 20, 2011, at 6 a.m.

LEE, Maine — The state medical examiner’s office was working Tuesday to determine how and why a Lee woman who owned a Lincoln drug counseling center died last weekend.

The body of Rose Smart, 49, was found in her Ogden Way home by family members Sunday. An autopsy conducted Monday failed to immediately show a cause or manner of death, a spokeswoman for the medical examiner’s office said Tuesday.

Further testing will be needed to determine how Smart died. Those tests could take five months to complete, the spokeswoman said.

State police were called to the house on Sunday. Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety, said he was unaware of any investigation or its results.

With her ex-husband, Smart founded the Riverside Community Center, 43 Fleming St., and its substance abuse counseling program several years ago. The center has treated several hundred, if not several thousand, area residents since its inception.

A licensed substance abuse counselor, Smart served as a mentor for several Lincoln Lakes region agencies and was an advocate for the Coats for Kids program. She also visited schools in the Lincoln Lakes region as an anti-drug specialist and was a passionate advocate for medical plans expanding substance abuse counseling services they paid for.

An official at the center said she did not want to comment on Smart’s death Tuesday without permission from family members. Smart is survived by an adopted daughter.

Calls to a Smart family member were not immediately returned Tuesday.

A wake for Smart will be held at Clay Funeral Home of Lincoln from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday. Smart’s funeral will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at First Congregational Church of Lincoln, with the Rev. Darrell Joiner officiating. She will be buried in Millinocket Cemetery.

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