April 23, 2019
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WASHINGTON, D.C. and FORT FAIRFIELD – Cora Davison Reed, 84, wife of former Maine Gov. John H. Reed, died Nov. 7, 2004, at Washington Home and Hospice Center after a long illness. She was born Aug. 13, 1920, in Haverhill, Mass., the eldest child of John A. and Ruth Hoitt Davison. A graduate of Haverhill High School in 1938 and McIntosh Business College in 1940, she worked as a secretary in the office of the Clarence Walker Shoe Factory in Haverhill prior to moving with her family to Newport, R.I. She took a position as executive secretary to the commanding officer of the Newport Naval Supply Depot. Here she met her future husband, Ensign John H. Reed of Fort Fairfield. The couple were married March 24, 1944, at the Newport Naval Chapel. After World War II, they moved to Fort Fairfield, where Reed was a partner in Walter M. Reed and Sons, Inc., a potato growing and shipping company. When John Reed became governor of Maine in 1959, the family moved to Augusta for the next seven years. After the completion of Gov. Reed’s term of office, he was appointed by President Lyndon Johnson to the National Transportation Safety Board. They moved to Washington, D.C., in 1967. Later her husband served two tours as .mbassador to Sri Lanka and the Republic of Maldives, Cora accompanied him during all of his government service. She was recognized for being a gracious hostess at each of her husband’s posts. On Sept. 1, 2004, she was honored by both the Senate and House of Representatives of the 121st Maine Legislature with a citation praising her “For dedicated service to the people of Maine during her years as First Lady. As official hostess, she warmly welcomed thousands of visitors to our Capitol.” While living at the Blaine House, Cora made a beautiful needlepoint cover for the piano bench which is still in use today. Mrs. Reed had been an active member of Untied Parish Church in Fort Fairfield and continued membership in Methodist churches wherever she lived. For many years she was a Sunday school teacher. She was a 50-year member of the Order of the Eastern Star and a member of the Philomathian Club. Throughout her life, Cora had a special concern for animal welfare and assisted in animal causes. Her special love was for cats, having owned many Persians over the years. However, one of her favorite cats was Sashi, a stray that she rescued in Maine. In addition to her parents, Mrs. Reed was predeceased by a brother, John A. Davison Jr.; and a sister, Ruth Sullivan. Survivors include her husband of 60 years, John H. Reed; two daughters, Cheryl Reed and friend John Lee of Alexandria, Va., and Ruth Ann and husband, Jerry Duford, of Groveland, Mass.; three grandchildren, Reed Duford of New York City, Drew Duford of Salem, Mass., and Curt Duford of Groveland, Mass.; one brother, Edward Davison of Huntington Beach, Calif.; several nieces and nephews. Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 13, at the Christ United Methodist Church, Washington, D.C., with the Rev. Esther Holiman officiating. The Rev. Jason Robinson will also participate. A committal service will be held in the spring at Riverside Cemetery, Fort Fairfield, under the Direction of Dorsey Funeral Home, with the Rev. Diane Langworthy officiating. Friends who wish may contribute in Mrs. Reed’s memory to United Parish Church Memorial Fund, care of Joyce Plant, 45 Brunswick Ave., Fort Fairfield, ME 04742, to the Central Aroostook Humane Society, 26 Cross St., Presque Isle, ME 04769 or to the Humane Society of their choice.

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