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Patricia's Story

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Scarborough, ME — Patricia Senter Levandowski of Portland passed away at Gosnell Memorial Hospice House on June 28, 2014, with her family by her side. She was born in Derry, N.H., on May 2, 1927, the daughter of Kenneth Lee and Beatrice Campbell Senter. Patricia attended local schools and graduated from Pinkerton Academy in Derry, Class of 1945.

She attended Jackson College, a division of Tuffs, where she majored in English, but transferred to the University of New Hampshire in her junior year to be with her husband-to-be, William. They were married on Aug. 22, 1948, in their home town of Derry, where they first met and fell in love in their early school years.

Patricia’s great passion and her lifelong work was teaching children. From her first position as the arts and crafts instructor in Derry, she went on to earn a master’s degree in education from the University of Maine. She was a devoted and beloved teacher at the Bessy School in Scarborough for 18 years. Prior to her time at Bessy School, she taught third grade in Chichester, N.H. Patricia retired on June 16, 1987, after 31 years in education.

Pat’s love of children and joy of discovery was shared by her husband, and they sought new experiences for their three children, William, Peter, and Ann. Patricia always sought to place her children in the best educational environment. They began their great adventure and education abroad in 1961. This included time living in Switzerland, Belgium and the Netherlands.

In the mid-1960s, they decided to reach beyond those borders and experience new cultures during summer holidays. They traveled through all of Europe including behind "The Iron Curtain," as it was called during the Cold War years; Poland, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, and Hungary. A high point of her efforts to provide learning opportunities for her children was living with students in the dormitory at the Krakow University in Poland.

Upon their return to the United States in 1969, Patricia continued her teaching career at Bessy School; one of her greatest joys and a great gift to all who are part of her teaching legacy.

Her classroom was always bright and organized and her voice always calm and supportive. She was attentive to her students’ needs and created individualized lesson plans so all could progress at their own rate. She particularly showed patience and care with those who most needed it and those least likely to seek it. Small considerations and gestures mattered to her and meant a great deal to those she touched.

She is survived by her husband of 66 years, William J. Levandowski; her children, William J. Levandowski Jr. of Portland, Peter Levandowski of Portland, and Ann L. Sawyer of Greenwich, Conn.; grandchildren, William J. Levandowski III, Abigail J. Sawyer and William J. Sawyer; and her brothers, Roger C. Senter of Palm Springs, Calif., and Dr. Kenneth L. Senter of Blue Hill, Maine.

ARRANGEMENTS: A memorial service with the Eucharist will be held at The Cathedral Church of St. Luke, in the Emanuel Chapel, 145 State St., Portland, on Saturday, July 26, 2014, at 11 a.m. A reception will be held at the Cathedral following the service and all are welcome to attend. The family will hold a private committal service at sea at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Patricia’s memory to the Portland Public Library, for use and support of the children’s collection and programs, 5 Monument Square, Portland, ME 04101.
Published on  July 10, 2014
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