June 21, 2018
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BLUE HILL – Nellie Gray Burton, 88, died Monday, June 8, 2009, at a Melbourne, Fla., nursing home. Nellie was born Nellie Blanche Gray, July 6, 1920, on Naskeag Point, Brooklin, the daughter of Willis Clayton Gray and Ruby Mildreth Choate of Brooklin. She was an avid gardener, sought-after cook for her “summer people,” and a beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Nellie graduated in 1937 at age 16 from Brooklin High School. She married Isaac Lincoln Burton in 1940 and had twins in May 1943. Ike shipped out with the Navy in June of that same year. Nellie raised newborn twins during World War II, while her husband was serving in the Seabees in the South Pacific. She and Ike were enthusiastic dancers for many years, competing in square dance contests all throughout the state. They spent many winters in Hollywood, Fla., and Melbourne, Fla., where they eventually bought a winter home. Her husband, Isaac “Ike” Burton, predeceased her in 1992. She was also predeceased by her brothers, Clyde Tilton Gray and Rodney Clayton Gray; and her daughter, Karen B. Sawyer. Nellie is survived by her son, Willis J. “Bill” Burton of Melbourne, Fla.; her sister and brother-in-law, Betty and Linwood Carter of Brooklin; her son-in-law, Dick Sawyer of Milbridge; her grandchildren, Rick Sawyer and wife, Penny Ricker, of Blue Hill, Tim and Kellie Sawyer of Brooklin, Jennifer Palmer of Melbourne, Fla., Heather Alexander of Calais and Michelle Youngman of Norfolk, Va.; and 10 great-grandsons. A memorial service is planned for this summer in Blue Hill.

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