Alice Faith Twombly
April 27, 1924 – January 3, 2021
Alice Faith (Freeman) Twombly, 96, of Chatham, MA, known as Faith by family and friends, passed away on January 3, 2021 at her home surrounded by family. Though she was born in Lexington, Ma on April 27, 1924, she spent her childhood summers in Chatham and considered it home. After graduating Middlebury College in 1945, she accepted a teaching position in a two room schoolhouse in the small town of Madison, NH, where she met her husband, Howard, who predeceased her in 1986. Soon after their first child, her yearning for the sea became so strong, they moved to Chatham to live and raise a family. Faith was active in the community, she spent many years as director of the Chatham Drop-In Center where she was fondly known as “Mother”. She had a generous heart and gave of herself to help others, never asking or expecting anything in return. Whether 2-legged or 4, she would do what she could to provide rescue, a ride home, a good meal, a roof over your head or a sympathetic ear. She had a positive spirit and zest for life. She also loved poetry and verse, and remembered word for word a library of poems and quotations, which she recited up until her final moments, before she “crossed the bar”. She chose the following to say goodbye:
Crossing the bar by Alfred Lord Tennyson. Sunset and evening star, And one clear call for me! And may there be no moaning of the bar, When I put out to sea.
But such a tide as moving seems asleep, Too full for sound and foam, When that which drew from out the boundless deep, Turns again home.
Twilight and evening bell, And after that the dark! And may there be no sadness of farewell, When I embark;
For tho’ from out our bourne of Times and Place, The flood may bear me far, I hope to see my pilot face to face, When I have crost the bar.
Faith leaves behind her children, Steve (Christine) Twombly , Peter Twombly and companion Kathy Guttay, and Susan (Scott) Noakes. She was predeceased by her son John (Kathy) Twombly. She also leaves behind her grandchildren, Lauren Twombly, Greta (Greg) Feldman, Hunter Twombly, Haley Twombly, Emma Noakes and Carly Noakes. Additionally she leaves behind a lifetime of friends and relatives, near and far, all of whom she cherished deeply; especially her good friend Marcia Bromley, who was committed to making sure she got to Larry’s PX on Tuesday mornings for breakfast with “the gang.” She will be missed by her “grand dogs”, Pablo, Frank and Gracie, who were happy to accompany during her afternoon naps. In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made in her name to Broadreach Hospice, who made it possible for her to remain comfortably at home. A memorial will be held this Spring.
- Broadreach Hospice
Alice Faith Twombly
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January 13, 2021
Others here have said much of what I remember, appreciate and cherish about Faith. I was a transplant to Chatham in 1978. The Drop-in-Center was as new to the town as I. And Faith Twombly was a most welcoming and inviting ambassador for both.
Her unique voice and kind spirit instantly come to my ear and heart as I write. And I was always happy to see Faith about town (even though I moved away decades ago). Faith never forgot me and I will never forget her.
Condolences to all her loved ones. A very special library has been lost with her passing. Speak truth and be kind.
January 12, 2021
Faith Twombly, like her name, was a friend to all who knew her. Always smiling, great salty sense of humor and knowledgeable in the history of the lower Cape. For thirty years or more Faith was an important member of the "boys" morning coffee group at the "Old Harbor Road" restaurant. My husband John, a writer, and Faith shared stories and jokes. Her memory for old poems was amazing. I believe Faith was the last member of that group. She will be missed.
January 12, 2021
I spent many years as a teenager at the Drop In with Faith. Friday Night dinners, heated games of scrabble with the biggest and best dictionary ever! She was an anchor to so many of us during those tumultuous years. As an adult I ran into now and then and we had breakfast a few times. There are no words for all that you did for so many kids- Thank you and may you rest in peace.
January 8, 2021
I enjoyed my visits to see my family on the cape. And your
expertise on the history of the cape and your family, I'm so
grateful for your hospitality and entertainment. RIP
January 8, 2021
I knew Faith for a very long time.her heart was as wide and strong as the sea she loved.As a young person in Chathsm ,she saved and gave to many of us.She always had a hearty laugh and a smile that could melt any harden heart.she gave me knowledge, of what it meant to be kind to others.many of us that are now grown up,will always rember 'Mother".
January 7, 2021
I met Aunt Faith in the summer of 1981. I was a scruffy, long-haired teenager without a lot to recommend me, except that I was the new boyfriend of Faith’s niece Tracy. That was more than enough for Faith, and she welcomed me into her home and, over time, into her family. She was one of the finest people I have ever known, a kind, gentle soul with a huge heart. She could talk about anything: pets, family, history, literature, or what was bothering you on any given day. And when you spoke with Faith, she really heard you, because she listened, thought about it, and remembered long afterwards what you had said. Why? Because she was in conversation what she was in life: generous, caring, and always thinking about others. Her universe of caring was wide, and not just limited to people. She loved animals, and like the great naturalist Jane Goodall understood them as individuals with complex personalities, even developing a relationship with a local fox, who would come to her yard to eat the grapes or other treats she’d leave out for it. In our last conversation, nearly forty years after our first, we compared notes on the joys of being a grandparent, and I can still see her smile and the happy light in her eyes.
January 7, 2021
Aunt Faith was a very special person. Always writing notes or a phone call to catch up. We tried to visit as often as we could, Cape Cod is a great place to visit and everyone was made to feel welcome. On our last visit, was it really 2016, we went for a ride around Chatham and she showed us all her favorite places, the beach, the lighthouse, old neighborhoods she hadn't been to in a while. All the while telling great stories. I will cherish these and many other memories for the rest of my life. She was a great woman and what more can I say that that!
January 6, 2021
For me, Aunt Faith was a sort of savior. I am one of her New Hampshire nieces from her husband's family, one of 12 children who grew up in poverty and would probably still be there but for the grace of my two favorite aunts. One sheltered and indulged me, and one, Aunt Faith, showed me what was, for me, the way out of poverty: that girls can and do go to college. Aunt Faith taught at the small, 2-room school in Madison, NH for just a couple of years, but she was a teacher and mentor throughout her long, happy, and wonderful life, which was filled with poetry and practicality - but almost no condemnation of others. She took people as they came, and left a legacy of good advice, kindness, and humor without sting: she managed to be very funny without ever being mean about it. She had a phenomenal memory and could recite reams of poetry to the last, from charming children's verse ("Toot, toot! Peanut butter!") to the great poets, like Tennyson, from whom my cousin Susan drew the stirring words of "Crossing the Bar," which truly epitomized Aunt Faith's attitude toward death. Over the last few years she told us not to weep for her when she was gone, because she had had a wonderful life, but I cannot obey her this time, except that I do not cry for her, but for myself, and all of the others whose lives she touched with her grace and gentle wisdom. I also mourn for the world, which has lost one of its Great Souls. For all who knew her, she will be sadly missed and deeply remembered for the way she always so graciously gave of herself. Birds, dogs, and foxes mourn her, as does this north country girl. I wish you gentle rest, Sweet Lady, no one can take your place in the universe.