Jeanette Powell, born Jeanette Alice Mitiguy, in Burlington, Vermont, May 24, 1935, to Arthur Andrew Mitiguy and Mary Wacker Mitiguy, died on February 1, 2018 in Hingham, Massachusetts.
The cause of her death was related to a stroke she suffered nine months ago. As she wished, she died peacefully at home, surrounded by family.
Jeanette attended Mount Saint Mary Academy, in Burlington, graduated from Kenwood Academy of the Sacred Heart, and received a bachelor’s degree from Manhattanville College. She went on to earn a Master in Social Work degree from Boston College.
Jeanette cherished her childhood memories, especially of summers at the family ‘camp’ on Lake Champlain. Her Vermont roots gave rise to a strong, free-spirited personality that she will be dearly remembered for.
Jeanette and her former husband, Thomas J. Powell, lived in Boston following graduate school before moving to Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1966.
Jeanette’s life in Ann Arbor was busy as she raised five children, worked at volunteer jobs, and maintained a rich social life with friends, neighbors and University of Michigan faculty. Her charitable work benefited numerous progressive causes, often with a focus on children, education, and Democratic politics.
As her children grew she began to pursue her passion for pottery, and was accepted to the Ann Arbor Potter’s Guild. She was fond of saying potters enjoy immortality because their shards survive indefinitely.
Jeanette retired to Wellfleet, Cape Cod where she made new dear friends, and fully enjoyed exploring the outer cape beaches and art galleries. In these later years, her volunteer interests continued to focus on service to others, but also expanded to include protecting nesting piper plovers on the Cape Cod National Seashore.
Jeanette will perhaps be best remembered for her generosity. She was happiest when she could help a friend, child, or grandchild, in a time of need.
She is survived by her children, Suzanne Powell, and her daughters, Charlotte and Julia Powell, of Pomfret Center, Connecticut; daughter Jean Chadbourne and her husband Christopher Chadbourne, of Newton, Massachusetts; daughter Sarah Powell, of Shelburne, Vermont; her son, Daniel Powell, his wife Sarah Powell, and their sons, Noah, Gabriel, and Nicholas Powell, of Austell Georgia; and her son, Tegr Michael Powell, of Hollywood, California. She is also survived by her sister, Marianne Kupic and her brother-in-law, Edward Kupic. Her brother, David Mitiguy and his wife Patricia Mitiguy predeceased her.
During the months after her stroke Jeanette appreciated the visits, cards and thoughtful remembrances from friends and family. Many said they had been touched by Jeanette’s kindness and would remember her beautiful smile, gift for great conversation and love of life.
Jeanette’s children are planning a private memorial to be held later in the year.