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OBITUARY: Anne H. Wallace

September 16, 2022
By Staff Report

Anne H. Wallace of Chestnut Hill, Yarmouth, Maine and Boca Grande died peacefully on August 21, 2022, at the age of 92. She is survived by her husband, Monte, to whom she was married for 69 years; her children John and Gardner Wallace and Elizabeth (Bo) Trase; as well as six grandchildren. Her brother John Wills, Jr. predeceased her. 

She was born in Beverly, Mass. on June 4, 1930. Her parents were John Wills and Doris Higgins Wills. She graduated from Brimmer and May School and then from Skidmore College, where she studied music and modern European and Russian literature. Anne was a warm, gracious, kind, and welcoming person to all. Throughout her life, whoever she met fell under the spell of her warmth and kindness. 

Among Anne’s numerous interests were various charitable organizations including the Museum of Fine Arts where she was an Associate and enjoyed guiding visitors through the highlights of the Museum. For many years, she was an active member of the committee responsible for running the Museum’s Devens Lecture Series. She was a longtime member of the Board of The New England Conservatory, where she established a scholarship fund so that deserving music students could afford to attend. In furtherance of her desire to help deserving students, she established scholarships at other schools as well. She also served on the Board of the Portland Museum of Art. Having led Skidmore’s acapella group, she was pleased to be able, later in her life, to participate actively in music again by chairing the Music Committee of the Vincent Shows in Boston, and composing music for those shows, which benefited the women’s health mission of the Vincent Memorial Hospital. Another of Anne’s interests was horticulture. She enjoyed working on conservation projects for the Chestnut Hill Garden Club, and she supported various conservation organizations, including the Maine Coast Heritage Trust and Nature Conservancy.

Her gardens were also dear to her heart. She had a colorful, beautifully designed garden in Maine and a more formal one in Chestnut Hill that received awards from the Massachusetts Horticulture Society. In addition, Anne maintained a tropical garden in Boca Grande, Florida. Flower arranging was one of her joys, and she won numerous prizes for her designs. A happy outgrowth of her interests in flowers, art and music was her involvement in the start of the annual Art in Bloom event at the Museum of Fine Arts.

Her horticultural interests extended to unusual trees, a number of which have been planted in her landscapes. As a docent at the Arnold Arboretum in Jamaica Plain, she enjoyed lecturing and guiding various groups through the numerous areas of the Arboretum. Anne was grateful for the long, full and interesting life she lived. While her primary focus throughout her life was on her loving family whom she adored, she was also able to travel widely and see much of the world.

She shared many adventures with her beloved husband on his various sail boats, often with family and good friends. In addition to cruising on the Maine coast, which she loved, and in the Caribbean, Europe and the Mediterranean, she cruised across the Pacific over a five year period, visiting not only Australia and New Zealand, but also many of the Pacific’s remote island nations, whose diverse cultures she found fascinating. That cruise went on to include Papua New Guinea and Indonesia. There were also trips to Africa, India and China. She understood and appreciated how fortunate she was to have had the opportunity to visit and learn about so much of the world and its peoples. Anne was a loving wife, mother and grandmother, and she deeply treasured the many years of her happy marriage, and the many years she spent with her family to whom she was so devoted and who, in turn, were so devoted to her. 

Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Memorial Service at The Church of the Redeemer, 379 Hammond Street, Chestnut Hill, Mass. on Tuesday, Oct. 25 at 11 a.m. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations in Anne’s memory can be made to the New England Conservatory, 290 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02115.

Originally published by Boston Globe.