MADAWASKA – Pauline Martin Giroux, 67, passed away Feb. 24, 2013, at a Caribou health care facility after a life long struggle with type one diabetes. She was born April 24, 1945, daughter of the late Lewis and Antoinette (Lagasse) Martin of Madawaska and was diagnosed as the first juvenile diabetic in Aroostook County, and the St. John Valley, at the age of seven.
Pauline’s mother had a great devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and promised Our Lady that if She watched over Pauline her mother would dress her in white and blue for seven years, which she did, and to which can be attributed the long life that Pauline lived with diabetes. As a young child, Pauline enjoyed sitting on her father’s lap as he drove his tractor around the family farm doing his chores. Life on the Martin farm during the 1940′s and 50′s was very demanding, but on Saturday nights the family would entertain themselves with dad strumming his guitar and Pauline accompanying him on a peddle organ with the rest of the family singing along. Every Sunday morning, the entire family would pile into the family truck and drive into town for Mass. Pauline was a four year member of the National Honor Society and graduated with high honors from Madawaska High School in 1963. She furthered her education at A.R. Gould Memorial Hospital, The Aroostook Medical Center, Presque-Isle, becoming a laboratory technician, and at Plus-Grays School of Business in Portland, graduating Magna cum Laude in 1971, as a medical transcriptionist. She never let her health issues interfere with her aspirations and enjoyed careers as a lab tech in Fort Kent, Northern Maine Medical Center, at Fort Fairfield Community Hospital and at Madawaska Outpatient Clinic, as well as serving as executive secretary and medical transcriptionist in the radiology departments at Mercy Hospital and the Osteopathic Hospital, both in Portland, before retiring in 1997, due to her health. She loved reading, counted-cross stitch, needle point, gardening, caring for her flowers, and laughing with family and friends, especially her dearest friends, Joan and Leon Strout of Portland, Pat and Roland Beaulieu of Wales, and Sandra and Wallace Desjardin of Eagle Lake. She generously supported diabetes research, Operation Smile, and for more then 40 years, the Maryknoll Missions. Her greatest joy was being the principle organist of St. Thomas Aquinas French Choir in Madawaska for six years until her first stroke prevented her from continuing. In 2002, Pauline received the Eli Lilly National Honor Award and Joselin Diabetes Foundation Award for living with diabetes for 50 years.
In addition to her parents, she was predeceased by her three pre-mature angels, Kristi-Lynn, Guihaume-Louis, and Claudine Louise. She is survived by her loving and devoted husband of 40 years, Douglas Louis Giroux who asked for her hand in marriage during their first date; and siblings, Claudette Martin of St. Quentin. New Brunswick, Canada, Louis Phillip Martin of Madawaska, Louise (Mrs. Greg Cyr), of Charles Town, W. Va., and Cecile Martin of Madawaska; nephew, Michel Cyr of Hermon, and his children, Elise and Pascal; nieces, Josee (Mrs. Sylvain Caron) and their children, Gabriele and Maxime, of St. Quentin, New Brunswick, Canada; and God-child, Jennifer Cobean and her children, Abigael, Gabriel and Iyrelyn of Ashburn, Va.; Pauline’s husband’s twin sister, Delores (Mrs. Ricky Brunette), and their adopted son, Petya, of Scarborough; and her brother-in-law, Thomas Giroux of West Palm Beach, Fla., and his sons, Michael and Edward of Scarborough.
A Mass in celebration of Pauline’s life will be held 10 a.m. Saturday, March 9, at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, Madawaska. Those who wish to offer their condolences may do so at the church from 9 a.m. until time of service on Saturday. Interment will be held in the spring at the family lot at Notre Dame du Mont Carmel Parish Cemetery, St. David. In lieu of flowers, donations in Pauline’s memory can be made to the American Diabetes Association, 1701 North Beauregard St., Alexandria, VA 22311 or to St. Thomas Aquinas parish memorial fund. Arrangements have been entrusted to Lajoie Funeral Home. For online condolences, please visit