Frances Thomas Carpenter
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Frances "Mimi" Thomas Carpenter (a.k.a. "The Notorious FTC") died on Sunday, September 20. After ninety-two years her body finally gave out, but her love, humor, and spirit are undoubtedly thriving in heaven. She was born in Johnstown, PA to the late Frederick and Catherine (Hutchison) Thomas. She was the younger sister of Catherine (Thomas) Lehr and Frederick Thomas, both deceased. She graduated in 1950 from Western College (now part of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio) and was the first person in her family to achieve this honor. Shortly after graduating, she moved to Washington D.C. and worked as a secretary for the U.S. Navy. In 1951 she met and married the love of her life, the late John Alcott Carpenter. Shortly after marrying, Mimi and John moved to Washington, PA where he taught American history at Washington and Jefferson College. In 1965 Mimi, John, and their three sons moved to Scarsdale, NY so John could teach at Fordham University. In 1978 John succumbed to lung cancer, and the responsibilities of raising three sons, running a household and being the breadwinner were unceremoniously thrust upon her. Mimi quickly earned a Master's degree in Library Science from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY and worked as both a corporate and community librarian until she was 78. Shortly after her much-deserved departure from the workforce in 2006, Mimi moved to Seabury, a retirement community in Bloomfield, CT where for the next fourteen years she made many close friends and enjoyed a very active life, serving Seabury's library, volunteering at a nearby soup kitchen, and playing on Seabury's varsity rugby team. Mimi is survived by her son Thomas Jewett Carpenter of Bellingham, WA; her son John Frederic Carpenter and his wife, Michelle (Miller) of Windsor, CT and their two sons Matthew Alcott Carpenter and his wife Danielle (Gonzales) of Alexandria, VA and Peter Drysdale Carpenter and his wife, Kirsten (Newton) of West Hartford, CT; and her son James Hargnett Carpenter and his wife, Laura (Rocco) of Lake Clear, NY and their son, Charles Joseph Carpenter and their daughter Margaret Madeleine Carpenter both of Lake Clear, NY. Mimi also leaves behind many dear friends and other close relatives too numerous to list. Mimi was a devout Christian and a voracious reader. Her favorite genres were history and books connected to the Bible and other areas of spirituality. She once wrote, "If I could invent my own religion on the lines of the Ten Commandments and the Sermon on the Mount, a bit of Buddha here and Zoroaster there, and Celtic and Indian love of Earth there, I might have a good mix." Being a child of the Great Depression she was careful with her spending and lived a simple life, donating her time and money to various local and international causes. She was an ardent environmentalist and feminist long before they became international movements. Mimi was an expert baker and was the reason her sons had any friends, as neighborhood kids only came over to sample the many different types of cookies, cakes, and breads she made on a regular basis. Her family would like to thank Theresa Brobbey for her outstanding and loving care during the last months of Mimi's life; the Masonicare nurses; Eloise and Doreen, two CNAs at Seabury; and the many other healthcare providers who brought her comfort during these past few years, including but not limited to Drs. Jane Walker, Adam Steinberg, and Mark Daily. In lieu of flowers please consider donating money to the Windsor Food and Fuel Bank, P.O. Box 854, Windsor, CT 06095 or online at Due to the pandemic, there will not be a local funeral service or calling hours. At some time in 2021, there will be a burial service at the family plot in Johnstown, PA. Carmon Funeral Home has care of arrangements. To leave on-line condolences please visit:

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Published in Hartford Courant on Sep. 24, 2020.
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3 entries
September 24, 2020
Our deepest condolences. We pray that the Lord blesses your family with comfort and peace.
Love, Rebecca and Kyle LaPage
Rebecca and Kyle LaPage
September 24, 2020
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
Tom/Patrice Weaver
September 24, 2020
What I loved about Mimi, at the beginning, was her oatmeal cookies. As I got to know her, I loved her sense of humor, her generosity, her curiosity, and her interest in others. She remained interesting and fun into old age. It's been a gift in my life knowing her over 45 years. She lives on in her children and their families.
Kevin O'Leary
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