The Fortin Group

70 Horton Street, Lewiston, ME


Sr. Claire J. Descoteaux

July 10, 1935May 14, 2020

SISTER CLAIRE DESCOTEAUX, OP, died at St. Mary’s d’Youville Pavilion on May 14, 2020. She was born in Lewiston, Maine on July 10, 1935, the daughter of Lucien Descoteaux and Antoinette (St. Denis) Descoteaux. She was baptized and confirmed at SS Peter and Paul parish and graduated from St. Dominic’s High School in 1953. She joined the Dominican Sisters that year and received her initial formation in Mortefontaine, France where she made her first religious profession in 1955. She was then assigned to our province in Japan and made her final religious profession in Kyoto, Japan, in 1958. Sister Claire was in Japan from 1955 to 1968 where she was an orphanage worker in Sendai, an English teacher in Kyoto and Sendai and pursued her studies in Tokyo. In 1968, she was assigned to our convent in Brookline, Massachusetts and taught French at St. Patrick’s school in Watertown, Massachusetts. In 1970, she returned to Maine where she continued her studies and taught at SS Peter and Paul school. In 1973, she received her B.S. from the University of Maine in Portland. That same year, she was assigned to Staten Island, New York, and taught at St. Rita’s school until 1977, when she joined the Dominican community in Gallup, New Mexico. There she taught in the parochial school and served as youth minister. In 1981, she came to Maine and taught at Our Lady of the Rosary school in Sabattus and began her studies at the SMVTI in Portland. With an LPN degree, she then joined the health care field serving at different times at the Marguerite d’Youville Pavilion, Marshwood Nursing Home in Lewiston and Bolster Heights in Auburn, while at the same time caring for her aging mother. In 1993, she joined our sisters in Staten Island and began her Clinical Pastoral Education. In 1994, she pursued CPE at the Eger Nursing Home in Staten Island and worked in home health care. She returned to Japan in 1998 as an English teacher at St. Dominic’s Institute in Sendai. She came back to the United States in 2003 and became part of our Iowa City, Iowa community where she volunteered at St. Wenceslaus parish and at a local catholic bookstore. She also helped with serving meals to the homeless, visits to the homebound and those in nursing homes. In 2010 Sr. Claire returned to Sabattus, Maine for her retirement remaining somewhat active in small tasks. As her health weakened she was at St. Mary’s d’Youville Pavilion until her death.

Sr. Claire was predeceased by her parents and a sister Anita (Descoteaux) Wade and brother-in-law, Jeff Wade. She is survived by one niece, Michelle Merrill and her Dominican Community. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated later at the Prince of Peace Parish in Lewiston followed by burial in St. Peter's Cemetery. Online condolences at www.thefortingrouplewiston.com Donations may be made to Loaves & Fishes 61 Lisbon Rd. Sabattus, Maine 04280

A service of The Fortin Group Funeral Homes of Lewiston and Auburn 207 784-4584


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Sr. Claire J. Descoteaux

have a memory or condolence to add?

Stephanie Lambert

May 23, 2020

All my sympathies to all who loved her

Marilyn Hutchins

May 19, 2020

This is a wonderful Woman. She is now in heaven with her loved ones. Sister Claire had a heart of Gold. She all so said it like it was. I loved so many things about her. When she learned that she was having Memory issues she came to me. She told me that this was happening to her but she wanted me to know she loved me. She loved Kimberly too. She would sneak in my office and let me know about all those she had met in Lewiston at the program to empower women. She had love and devotion of helping others. I love this woman. She said when her Sister passed that she was home. And I know Sister Claire is home. When she cared about you you knew it. God, has an Angel. Her and her Sister are having a slumber party and dancing to Elvis. God Bless you Sister Claire, always in my heart. Always.


Learn more about the Descoteaux name