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Thoreau Raymond Obituary
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December 07, 2016

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Preview Entry
December 07, 2016

Please don't submit copyrighted work; original poems, songs or prayers welcomed. Legacy.com reviews all Guest Book entries to ensure appropriate content. Our staff does not correct grammar or spelling.

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 Memories & Condolences
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March 28, 2011
I met Thoreau when she was in her late 70s. She was visiting her cousin, Thayer Raymond, at Thayer's retirement home in Washington State. Thayer (also a former teacher) was a friend of my Mother's & mine, & Thoreau became a friend as well. We took a number of day trips together over the years, & we visited the historic town of Raymond, Washington, which had been named after the Raymond family. We had long, interesting conversations with her. She had a great sense of humor & a real love of life!!! I already miss her!
February 8, 2011
As daughter in law of Thoreau's dear friend Barbara Woodruff, I knew her for over 40 years as "Aunt Thoreau". First she was someone who could walk much faster and speak much more crisply and to the point than I. Impressive. And no nonsense, no small talk.
Over the years there were wonderful letters and after my mother in law died, I felt Aunt Thoreau's presence almost as a kind of luminous watching over us, a keeping all of us in her thoughts, our generation, our children and our grandchildren, wishing us well. She seemed to know what was going on from a great distance and it was very comforting.
On a more down to earth level, thanks to my seeing her ritual of taking out her tiny amount of compost at Havenwood I think of her every time I take out mine. Responsibility to return, restore the natural cycle. Not a bad legacy!
February 7, 2011
I met Thoreau almost twenty yrs ago when she first moved to Concord. I was a young painter, and had decided to clean houses for work for a time, and through word of mouth found myself at Thoreau's. I believe we spent as much time talking as I did actually working for her, and as time went on she joined my family (my mother, my grandmother, and myself) for many Thanksgivings and Christmases, and day trips to the coast. My grandmother, who passes away five years ago, lived not far out of town, and had a large overgrown yard and garden, and I would sometimes seat Thoreau and my grandmother outside on a sunny day while I worked in the garden. She was always glad to get out into the country (I remember trying to keep a compost pile going in her little yard at Havenwood), and we would take drives up into the mountains.
She never talked much about herself, though I knew there were stories to be told (and I would love to hear them!), but she was always interested and supportive, keen and insightful, and had the most delightful laugh!
It was a joy to have known her, and I will miss her terribly!
February 6, 2011
I last saw Thoreau Raymond in October when we stopped by to see her. She was luminous. Somewhat weak, I noticed, but strong-minded as ever. In recent years she read the ms. of a book I was writing about theater and gave me excellent comments on it. This was heroic, I realize now, in view of her failing eyesight. She was always heroic, traveling to Korea and Ghana when few Americans dared go there. From Korea she somehow brought back wonderful Pauline Kim, mother of Ken Chang, who was with us often when we were small. She taught me have a special love for Korean people. Thoreau was my mother's best friend in college and I think for all her life. They were like sisters. In 1955, when I was twelve, I found a copy of Walden she had given my mother. I read it and decided to be a philosopher-writer. As I am. I will never forget her pungent comments, her ax-sharp goodness, her faithfulness with friends, her willingness to stake out surprising positions. She left us all better for her life. Paul Woodruff
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