Barbara Louise McLaughlin, 84, passed away on Saturday, August 12th at home, surrounded by family. She grew up in Bremen, Maine with 1 sister and 5 brothers. Childhood stories of a welcoming and loving home for friends and family, a pet pig, a dog named Penny and sisterly love fests involving torn dresses and scissors always made us laugh. Getting hit by a truck, hitchhiking and sending tourists in circles were early signs of the mischief she enjoyed creating her whole life. This high school graduate was a smarty, sought out by engineers for her commonsense feedback on new products during her 19 years at GTE Sylvania. Her intelligence, work ethic and silliness made her a beloved employee and friend.
With a sassy smile and fun sense of style, she rocked her hairpieces, jumpsuits, miniskirts and white bikini. Dancing at Country Crossroads, hanging at the Legion, making wise cracks and bad jokes were all things she enjoyed. A single mom who struggled to raise four children, she was generous but frugal as well, believing if you can’t find it at Goodwill, yard sales or the Dollar Store, you probably don’t need it. Taught her children the values of hard work, honesty, self-sacrifice as well as a do-it-yourself attitude. Being an amateur plumber, electrician, gadget and toy fixer, her grandkids knew that if no one else could fix it, Grammy Barbara could, though lord knows half the time even she didn’t know how she did it. Used the smell test instead of the expiration date to decide if food really and truly had gone bad and always had a candy drawer filled with tootsie rolls and M&M’s. A talented seamstress who made our school clothes, matching doll clothes, many gifts and amazing costumes for the grandkids, she also shared her skill with family and special friends, like Allison. She possessed a splash of hillbilly Martha Stewart, literally painting the weeds in her yard.
A lover of scratch tickets, puzzles, computer games, Bananagram’s and making people laugh with her sarcasm. Such a kid at heart, going all out on Halloween and Christmas, loving all toys that sang and danced as well as ensuring her tree tinsel was “just so”. Queen of crazy emojis, delighting in using them, many of them, on all your FB posts.
Mom is survived by her two brothers: Donald Mank of Nobleboro and David Mank of
Bremen, her children; Pamela and Alan Yankowsky, Patrick and Suzette McLaughlin, Tonia McLaughlin,
Timothy McLaughlin and Melanie Hart. She adored her 11 grandchildren, 3 great grandchildren and many other family and friends. She touched many lives in her time here, and we all feel blessed to have
known this precious lady.
As long as you’re okay that’s all that matters to me, she always said when asked how she was doing. She left secure in the knowledge that her family is okay, carrying the memories and life lessons she taught us all.
“Babe, relax and go to bed”, we would answer “Goodnight Mom, we love you”.
There will be a celebration of life on October 1st, 2023 from 1-4 pm at 821 E Pittston Road, Pittston, Maine followed by a private ceremony for immediate family.
Hall’s of Waldoboro has care of the arrangements. To extend online condolences, light a candle for Barbara or to share a story or picture, please visit Barbara’s Book of Memories at www.hallfuneralhomes.com.