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Mary Teresa's Story

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Mary Teresa White, 64, of Rockport, wife of Thomas A. Philbrook, passed away at Mass General Hospital on Monday, February 6, 2017, after a seven year battle with cancer. Throughout her entire medical odyssey, Mary fought on with courage, grace and dignity. Mary was born in Milton, Mass., on July 6, 1952, the daughter of the late Leo Francis and Eleanor Marie Bocaccino White. She graduated from Westwood High School and continued her studies at Northeastern University obtaining her Bachelor of Fine Arts. Her career, for many years, entailed working as a graphic designer and illustrator. When the computer overtook the graphics business, Mary reinvented herself, looking towards nature and became an organic gardener, opening her own business as “White Gardens of Rockport” in 2002. She thoroughly enjoyed working the earth, getting dirty and nurturing her gardens. Mary adored travel, bad weather, liberal politics, beautiful art from Russian icons to David Hockney, smelly compost, John Lennon, providing unsolicited advice, bad puns, anything with lots of garlic in it, Coen Brothers movies, almost every human being she ever met, and of course, Rockport and Cape Ann. In fact, there wasn’t much of anything Mary did not embrace or appreciate except for maybe tapioca and movies with talking animals in them. Mary spread love, laughter and sunshine wherever she went with her bright smile and open heart. To many a loyal friend she was giving, empathetic and nonjudgemental. In the heart of her husband, she was a beloved superhero. Her spirit will live on forever in the hearts of many.
She is survived by her husband, Thomas; a sister, Anne V. Moore and her husband, Scott of Dublin, Ohio; her nephews, Alex and Patrick Moore; her stepmother, Mary Virginia Lane White; and many loving cousins.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in her memory to a pending GoFundMe project whose purpose it will be to create and maintain a small garden in Mary’s name located somewhere in her beloved Rockport community.
Arrangements are by the Greely Funeral Home, 212 Washington St., Gloucester, MA. Online condolences may be given at www.greelyfuneralhome.com.
Gloucester Times
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James C. Greely Funeral Service

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