Rita F. Beliveau, 1917 - 2015

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Rita F. Beliveau, 98, of Lewiston died August 21, 2015 at D’Youville Pavilion, surrounded by her family.  She was born in Lewiston, Maine on June 12, 1917, the first of three children of Albert and Louise Fortier.  Rita grew up in Auburn, Maine and attended Edward Little High School, graduating with class of 1935.  She then studied nursing at St. Mary’s Hospital School of Nursing, and received her R.N. class of  1939. She worked as a nurse at St. Mary’s until her marriage to Bertrand A. Beliveau, M.D.  Upon their marriage in 1940, Rita immediately became a stepmother to Bertrand’s son, John, whose mother, Mary Twomey Beliveau, died in February of 1937.  Rita and Bertrand soon completed their family by adding two daughters, Patricia and Gilda. 

After her marriage to Bertrand Beliveau in January of 1940, Rita worked in his medical office as a nurse, a position she held until her husband’s death on July 15, 1976.  Rita was an enthusiastic supporter of St. Mary’s Hospital particularly as a member of that hospital’s patroness’s association. Upon her husband’s death, Rita established an endowment fund, the Bertrand A. Beliveau Heart Fund, administered by St. Mary’s Health Systems. 

She is survived by her daughters Patricia Thomas and husband Jack of Colorado, Gilda Dick and husband Edward of Arizona, and stepson John Beliveau, Sr., of Lewiston.  Rita is also survived by grandchildren Julie Doody and husband Peter, Carter Thomas and wife Micki, and Brian Thomas and wife Trista, all children of Patricia and Jack Thomas; Sara Beliveau and EJ Dick, children of Gilda and husband Edward Dick; and Julie Lamond and husband John, Kathy Cole and husband Ken, and John B. Beliveau, Jr., children of John Beliveau, Sr. She is also survived by several great-grandchildren.  

 Rita was predeceased by her husband Bertrand A. Beliveau, MD, sisters Pauline Wise and Claire Spugnardi, and parents Albert and Louise Fortier. She lived with Pauline Wise after her husband died.  

 For more than thirty years, Rita and her husband ran a solo medical practice in Lewiston and were extremely attentive and dedicated to their patients.  During many of those years the practice of medicine was a 24/7 occupation, but they were, in their later years, able to travel extensively and spend summers at their cottage on Sabbathday Lake in New Gloucester, Maine. 

At home and at the lake, Rita and her husband spent time with their good friends.  Some of these special friends were Liane and Ross Nolin, Vincent and Geraldine Beeaker, Frank and Cecile Methot, and Bill and Martine Begert, all of whom have predeceased her.  In addition Rita was attentive over the years to all her nieces and nephews from the Wise and Spugnardi families.  

Special thanks to her niece Carole Wise, who helped care for Rita, and the staff at d’Youville and Androscoggin Hospice, who were very attentive and caring of Rita. 

Funeral Notice

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BELIVEAU, Rita, 98, of Lewiston, died in Lewiston on August 21, 2015. Services will be private. Donations in her memory may be sent to the Bertrand A. Beliveau Heart Fund, administered by St. Mary’s Health Care Systems, P.O. Box 7291 Lewiston ME 04240.

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© Gerald Burpee 2016