EXETER - Anne Delight Colby Zachos died on Thursday, July 2, 2020, having battled Alzheimers for almost ten years. Born in Concord, N.H. on June 20, 1934 to Helen Sayles Colby and Willoughby Amos Colby, Anne attended Concord High School, then Wellesley College, graduating in 1956. After graduation she worked for the Red Cross in Boston, Mass., and at MIT. It was while living in Boston that she was introduced to Kimon Zachos (also of Concord) on a blind date. In 1959, Anne and Kimon were married, and remained so until Kimon's death in 2014.
Anne was part of a generation that straddled the roles of women in society. Educated and ambitious, she was a stay at home mother for many years. Yet Anne was always a feminist, instilling in her three daughters, Ellen, Elizabeth, and Sarah, the belief that they could accomplish anything. She hosted Gloria Steinem in her guest room, lobbied for passage of the ERA, and actively supported Democratic candidates, despite her husband's position in the N.H. Republican party and their frequent political debates. She was a steadfast wife and partner, and a devoted mother. When her children were in high school, she went back to work as the secretary for her church, the Unitarian Universalist Church in Manchester, N.H.
Anne gave generously of her time to charitable work in Manchester, serving on the Board of Directors of the Manchester Public Library, the N.H. Charitable Foundation, and the Humanities Council. She was actively involved with the institutions that mattered most to her: Wellesley College, YMCA Camp Huckins, and The Currier Museum of Art. She firmly believed that art in all forms was essential, and supported local artists with scholarships and volunteerism.
The things we remember most about Anne were not her social and civil accomplishments, but the life she created for us at home. She could do anything. She sewed matching dresses for her three daughters, learned to cook Greek food like a pro, organized elaborate family trips abroad long before the internet made that easy, and could drive anywhere with astonishing calm in the days before we all had a GPS on our phones. Her confidence and capability made you feel safe when you were with her. Of course there were rules and chores, which gave us a sense of responsibility and an understanding of consequences. There was also much laughter, because humor was as important as education. There were hours of singing on long car trips, and every day ended with supper, all of us together at the table.
Anne was not only a devoted wife and mother, but also a loyal friend. She maintained relationships with her friends from Concord, Camp Huckins, and Wellesley College for her entire life, some of them for over 80 years.
Anne was predeceased by Kimon, her parents, and her sister, Cynthia Gabrielli.
She is survived by her daughters Ellen Zachos (Santa Fe, N.M.), Elizabeth Zachos (Brookline, Mass.), and Sarah James (Exeter, N.H.).
Alzheimers is a cruel disease, forcing a family to grieve the loss of their loved one while the loved one lives on. We choose to remember our mother the way she was in her prime: strong, opinionated, an excellent cook, an avid traveler, a loving mother, and an energetic student of life. We are relieved that her struggle is over, and can never thank her enough for the many gifts she gave us.
In lieu of flowers, gifts may be sent to YMCA Camp Huckins, Annual Fund, 17 Camp Huckins Rd., Freedom N.H. 03836. www.brewittfuneralhome.com