Ellen Kingsbury
1906 - 2013
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Ellen Wales Kingsbury whose father, Nathaniel Wales was a major in the 35th Massachusetts Volunteer Regiment during the Civil War and a participant in the Battle of Antietam, passed away peacefully at the age of 106 in her Concord residence on June 15th. Ellen was born in her parent's home in Jamaica Plain on September 11, 1906. Her mother, Ellen Munroe was from Plymouth and was the second wife of Nathaniel Wales. Nathaniel Wales was a lifelong resident of Jamaica Plain. He joined the Union army during the early stages of the Civil war as an enlisted man and eventually rose to the rank of Major. During the Battle of Antietam he was shot in the chest, because he was wearing a bullet proof loaned to him by a friend his life was saved. His father, Thomas C. Wales had earlier founded the American Rubber industry with Charles Goodyear of Woburn. Ellen first attended Miss Seegar's School on Eliot St. in Jamaica Plain, and later the Lee School on Clarendon St. in Boston. She graduated from the Winsor School in 1925 before heading across the Charles River to Radcliffe College. She was only at Radcliffe for a year and a half when she was hospitalized for seven months following a sledding accident while vacationing in Maine in the winter of 1927. After she recovered from the accident Ellen volunteered through the Junior League of Boston at a number of hospitals in Boston, especially The Boston Lying-In Hospital. Summers she was a camp counselor at Camp Wabenaki in Maine, a camp she had spent a number of summers at when she was a child. In 1931 Ellen married Howard T. Kingsbury of New York City. While a student at Yale Howard, or "Ox" as he was called by everyone, had won an Olympic Gold medal at the 1924 Paris Olympics as a member of Yale's 8 oared shell. They had met just before her sledding accident and he became a frequent visitor when she was in the hospital. They were married in the Arlington St. Church in Boston. Ox was a schoolteacher, and Ellen devoted the next 40 years of her life to being a schoolmaster's wife. They were a team whose impact on thousands of young men was far reaching. They worked briefly at the Westminster School in Connecticut, Hebron Academy in Maine, but the majority of their years were spent at the Brooks School in North Andover, Massachusetts. Her husband was a math teacher, crew coach and eventually assistant headmaster. She was the dorm mother who provided motherly support for thousands of young men who had never been away from home before. When the Class of 1957 held their 50 reunion in 2007 they dedicated that reunion to Ellen for all the support and kindnesses she had shown them when they were students. Ellen and Ox retired to Stonington Connecticut in 1969 and spent several years there before moving to Lincoln Massachusetts. After her husband died Ellen, who actually was known as Jerry by everyone, moved to Newbury Court in Concord. She was one of the very first people to move in when it opened. She was a very active retiree who loved to travel and went on a number of cruises to Egypt and through the Aegean Sea. She had a number of friends in England and loved visiting. An active supporter of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, she attended many Friday afternoon concerts. She loved to read history and poetry. While she was not active politically she had very strong opinions about the way the country was being run in recent years. She was also an avid genealogist and had done extensive research on both her families genealogy as well as her husband's family. But her favorite place of all was North Haven, Maine. She summered there as a child, and she and Ox purchased a place early in their marriage. For the next four decades they returned every summer to sail, swim and entertain friends. They enjoyed the peace and quiet of the beautiful island. When it became too difficult for her to return physically, she loved to remember the happy days spent there with her friends and family. Ellen is survived by her daughter Ruth Sherman of Sacramento, California. Her son Nathaniel predeceased her in 1998. She is also survived by 7 grandchildren, Macy de la Guardia of Panama, Neal Kingsbury of Miami, Florida, Carl Sherman, Heather Moore and Roger Sherman of California, Maggie and Jimmy Kingsbury of Doylestown, Pennsylvania, and her daughter-in-law Terri Kingsbury of Doylestown. Services private, interment will be in North Haven Maine. Arrangements under the care of Glenn D. Burlamachi, CONCORD FUNERAL HOME, Concord. To share a memory or offer a condolence visit www.concordfuneral.com.

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Published in The Concord Journal from Jun. 21 to Jun. 28, 2013.
Memories & Condolences
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5 entries
March 19, 2014
I am sorry to hear of her passing. I did not know her, but I corresponded with her about some research I did into the rowing career of 'Ox'. She graciously lent me some family rowing records. She was a genial and dignified lady, and her husband was a fine teacher, coach, and oarsman. John Rudoff, M. D.
July 2, 2013
Cousin Ellen, as I knew her as a child, or Cousin Jerry, as I heard her called when I was older, was a lovely, gracious woman. I loved visiting her and Cousin Ox all of my life, and especially as a child on North Haven. I always felt wonderful in her presence.
Pam Burr Smmith
June 25, 2013
We knew Jerry as a great supporter of the arts and music and a wonderful friend. We will miss her. Betsy and Bill Moyer, Newbury Court, Concord
June 24, 2013
My Dad was the Kingsbury's caretaker here on Vinalhaven Island for a number of years and their regular repairman for decades. By the time I was able to help out as a teenager in the late 50's and early 60's, I looked forward to working at their place on the Thorofare more than any other of my Dad's job site. Ox & Ellen were as gracious and personable as any folks I've ever known. After Ox passed away Ellen remained fully engaged with life. About fifteen years ago she was knocked overboard when a passing boat struck the one she was riding in. The captain of the offending boat swung around and, reaching into the water for her, attempted to pull her aboard. There are right ways and wrong ways, however, to affect a rescue and the captain, wide of the mark, endured a modest lecture from Ellen as she tread water on the proper way to lift a lady from the water. Eventually he mastered the technique and brought a remarkably forgiving Ellen on deck.
Phil Crossman
June 21, 2013
I had the great pleasure and honor of knowing Mrs. Kingsbury over these last number of years. She had just retired from Brooks and moved to Stonington when we found her and "Ox" on North Haven in the Newbold house. As a Brooks School graduate, an oarsman, and then as rector of the Episcopal Church in Stonington we had a great deal to discuss. She was a great woman who defied age. Her wit and grace were only surpassed by her ability to engage those who would visit her. I found her once in her long term care home on the Cape, and then in Lincoln.
Please let me know if I may be of any service in her service as it would be a great honor.
The Rev Cn Mark K.J. Robinson
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