Betty Vollmer

Betty VollmerBetty Vollmer 2DAMARISCOTTA - In the company of family and friends, Betty Vollmer passed away Sunday, February 8, 2015 at Cove’s Edge in Damariscotta.

Betty Lou Boughton was born August 27, 1929 in Detroit, Michigan. She attended schools in Roseville, Michigan and soon thereafter married Donald E. Cowing and began spending summers with Don and his extended family in Dresden, Maine. After living in Michigan and New Jersey, Betty and Don moved permanently to Dresden in 1969 with their five children.

Betty became a mother and a teacher at a young age and never relinquished either role. She had brief stints as a switchboard operator and a nurse assistant following high school, but soon began attending various colleges and universities part time as she pursued her interest and passion in teaching. She worked in schools in East Detroit, as a Head Start director in New Jersey, and was a longtime special educator in Wiscasset and Woolwich schools. Betty served as a Dresden selectman and a school board member for several years, and was an active member of St. Philips Church in Wiscasset, where she initiated the Monday night fish chowder tradition.

Betty’s talents were varied. She was a voracious reader, an accomplished singer, and loved playing the piano and knitting. But her signature talents were cooking and baking. These passions were second only to (and often combined with) teaching. Betty could create much out of little and make it delicious and memorable. Whether using a wood cook stove or a more modern appliance, she could be depended upon to create something delectable that wouldn’t last long around anyone with an appetite. Since she seldom relied on recipes, and often modified those she did use, her creations were hard to replicate.

In addition to her own children, Betty referred to her many students and friends as “my kids.” This reflected her deep-seated desire to make a personal contribution to the lives of those around her. Whether connected through family, church, school, or community, her selflessness guided her throughout a life of giving to others.

Betty was predeceased by her three husbands: Dr. Donald Cowing, Joseph Parsons, and Philip Vollmer; her parents, Usher T. Boughton and Florence Valade Boughton, and her brother, Bob Boughton.

She is survived by her brother, Jack Boughton and his wife Jan who reside in Clawson, Michigan; her five children and spouses: Don Cowing, Jr. and his wife Karren of Georgetown; David Cowing and his wife Judith Stafford of Woolwich; Pam Freeman of Newcastle; Beth Cowing-Young and her husband Jon Young of Newcastle; Dan Cowing of Dresden and his four children; and a special nephew Tim Cowing and his wife Kristen of Dresden; along with many grandchildren, great-grandchildren and nephews and nieces.

A special thank you to her granddaughters, Holly Morgan, Kathy Freeman, and Laura Cowing-Sawyer for their loving care of “Grammy” at the end of her life. Betty’s family especially want to express their deep appreciation to the staff at Cove’s Edge for their patience, love and support. 

In addition to her extended family, Betty touched the lives of countless others who knew her through her good works throughout midcoast Maine and St. Philips Church. She will be missed by all.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Betty’s name to the St. Philips “Save Our Steeple” fund, 12 Hodge St., Wiscasset, Maine 04578. 

A memorial service will be held at St. Philips Episcopal Church in Wiscasset on Saturday, February 28 at 2 pm, with a committal service planned for this coming summer.