Mary Elvira's Story

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Mary Elvira [Leavitt] Spinney passed away peacefully on May 8, 2017 at Den Mar Health & Rehab Center in Rockport. She was born in Youngstown, Ohio on April 1, 1928 to Edwin A. Leavitt Jr. and Mary Lee [Hamilton] Leavitt. She was the seventh and youngest child of Edwin and Mary. Mary was called Elvira by her family and close friends. In 1930 she traveled to Gloucester in a touring car with her parents and six siblings a dog named Carlo, a sewing machine and a few personals to be with her grandfather Edwin Sr. who had lost his fourth wife and was lonely for his family. She grew up on Maplewood and Gloucester Ave. She met the love of life William H. Spinney Sr. as a young child. They married in 1948 and were married for 59 years until his death in 2007.

Elvira graduated from Gloucester High School, Class of 1946. She worked for the Telephone Company before starting her family in 1949. In 1952 she started working at Patrican’s Bakery and she taught herself to decorate cakes. She also worked at Ski’s Bakery and retired in 1989. She also worked as a guide at the Beauport, the Sleeper – McCann House.
Elvira was a very talented woman. There wasn’t a craft that she didn’t attempt to master. She sewed, knitted, crocheted, macramé, quilted, embroidery, ceramics, wood carving, stamping and leather craft. She was an artist and painted many scenes around Cape Ann. Elvira also repaired antique dolls. She bought an antique spinning wheel and searched museums to find someone to show her how to spin wool. She also enjoyed cooking, baking, gardening and genealogy. She belonged to the National Association of Leavitt Families and was the secretary and treasurer for several years and she helped in revitalizing the association. Her grandfather was one of the original members in the 1930’s.

Elvira chaired her high school class reunions for 60 years. She was a member of Seashore Rebekah Lodge. She was a communicant of St. John’s Episcopal Church and a Sunday School there teacher there for many years.

Elvira is survived by her daughter, Cheryl D. Spinney Puccio and her husband Vincent of Wilmingto. Also her grandsons Rocco A. Puccio of Wilmington, and his girlfriend, Christin Arruda of Somerville and Andrew J. Puccio and his fiancé Erica Elliott of Lowell; and a special niece, Norma Blaisdell and her family of Gloucester, and many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her son, William H. Spinney Jr. and her brothers, William F. Leavitt, Edwin A. Leavitt III, George H. Leavitt and Leslie L. Leavitt and her sisters, Mabelle L. Wonson and Charlotte E. Powers; her brothers-in-law, Roderick M. Spinney, Prescott Y. Spinney Jr., George C. Spinney and Ernest C. Spinney. She was predeceased by her longtime friend, Margaret Mione Goulart, who was her friend for over 65 years.
Elvira’s Memorial Service will be in the Pike-Newhall Funeral Home, 61 Middle St. Gloucester, on Monday, May 15, 2017 at 11 a.m. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Den Mar Activities Program, 44 South St., Rockport, MA 01966, or the Gloucester Alumni Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 1226, Gloucester, MA 01930 or charity of choice. For online condolences and register book please visit www.pikenewhall.com.
Published on  May 12, 2017
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