9 Januray 09

Gulliver found this dear little sparrow in the studio yard early this morning.    We didn’t know then that she was a messanger.


We had just left Pat in the log cabin packing a suitcase and getting ready for her first full day of hospice care for Mae.  As Gully and I were  finishing our breakfast Pat came into the studio kitchen with a stunned look on her face and said that Mae had died last night.  After spending part of almost every day for the last few weeks with Mae in her home and with her family and watching her do hours of yoga and exercises each day and telling stories of her decades of union organizing around the globe and dancing with her husband and protesting against the war every friday since it began years ago…and all with a memory sharper than every one of ours combined…it was shocking news. But after hearing Mae’s conviction that she was ready, indeed eager…to die…and not at all interested in being a burdensome invalid … it made Pat smile to realize Mae’s spirit trumped us all.

Mae Millstone        95 yrs of truth telling activism…

May flights of sparrow sing thee to thy rest …. PEACE.

Mae Millstone  
YORK Mae Millstone, 95, died Friday, January 9, 2009, at her home in the company of her family. She was the widow of Harry Millstone, who died in 1999, and to whom she had been married for 60 years. She was born September 17, 1913, in Philadelphia, the daughter of Hyman and Dora (Shedlovsky) Kaplan. She graduated in 1934 from Pennsylvania State University with both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in sociology. She then worked for the National Recovery Administration in Pennsylvania as a special investigator, making sure that workers were being paid the required wages and that working conditions for home employment were not being abused. Later, she was employed as a supervisor with the Public Health Service on a project studying chronic disease in west coast mining towns. In 1936, she moved to Detroit, Mich., for the next phase of the project, compiling information and preparing a statistical report. There, she met Harry Millstone, a union organizer for the CIO. Their marriage in 1938 began a partnership of mutual interest in and work for the labor movement. In Newark, N.J., Ms. Millstone was associate editor of the Fur & Leather Worker magazine. After moving to Williamsport in 1941, she served as education and welfare director for the Fur & Leather Workers union. She moved with her family to York in 1961, where she became the editor of the women’s pages for The Gazette and Daily newspaper. She worked to broaden the range of articles on those pages by including information about nutrition, health, and consumer education. A lifelong activist and supporter of progressive causes, she was involved in voter registration drives, opposition to the Vietnam war, support for the civil rights movement, and women’s issues. In recent years, she was an outspoken critic of the war in Iraq and participated in regular peace vigils in downtown York. She was also an escort for patients at the local offices of Planned Parenthood. She was preceded in death by both her husband, Harry, and her daughter, Amy Millstone. She is survived by a son, David H. Millstone of Lebanon, N.H.; two stepgrandchildren; and two step great-grandchildren. At her request, her body was donated to the Humanity Gifts Registry to be used in the education of medical students. Local arrangements were handled by the John W. Keffer Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 902 Mt. Rose Ave., York. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Contributions in her memory may be made either to Planned Parenthood of Central Pennsylvania, 728 S. Beaver St., York, PA 17401; or to the Jane Addams Peace Association, 565 Boylston St., Boston, MA 02116. www.kefferfh.com

One thought on “Harbinger

  1. I am very sad for all of Mae’s loved ones that will miss her always, but am sure that Mae is where she wanted to be right now. From all I heard about her she is a remarkable women. Be At Peace Mae