MOUNT DESERT — Alice M. Rieser of Mount Desert died peacefully Thursday, November 12, 2015, at Evergreen Manor in Saco, Maine, surrounded by her family. She was born February 16, 1927, in New York City to Johanna and John Rieser, who immigrated to the United States from their native Austria.
Alice was raised in the Bronx, N.Y. She commuted to high school in Manhattan, where she attended and graduated from Cathedral Roman Catholic High School. After graduation, she attended secretarial school. Shortly thereafter Alice accepted a position with the U.S. government in Germany, where she worked for three years before returning to New York. She worked at several jobs before settling into her career as an executive administrative assistant with the accounting firm Ernst & Whinney in Manhattan. Alice walked to work every day from her apartment on E. 46th Street. Later, she transferred to Ernst & Whinney’s Washington, D.C., office where she worked until her retirement in 1987. Many times Alice expressed gratitude for her years spent working for “Mr. Berenson,” who always treated her as a family member.
Alice retired to Mount Desert Island in 1987 to provide loving care for her aging parents during their later years. She cherished living on MDI and spending time with her sister Marie McEnaney and her family. Alice also took great pleasure in her daily walks on Ripples Road and put on many miles over the years.
Alice was an active volunteer on the island serving as a board member for Island Connections and as secretary and vice president of the Mount Desert Nursing Association. She also volunteered at a thrift shop in Northeast Harbor that benefited a local animal shelter. Alice especially enjoyed volunteering at nursing homes on the island and was known by residents for her regular readings of jokes to lighten their spirits.
Alice was a member of Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Bar Harbor. She enjoyed music and was trained as an opera singer as a young woman. Even in her later years, Alice brought joy to those who had the pleasure of hearing her perform “Ave Maria” in Mass.
Alice was predeceased by her parents, John and Johanna Rieser, and her sister Marie McEnaney and husband, Bill. She leaves behind nephews, William McEnaney Jr. and his wife, Nancy, of Bellingham, Wash.; John McEnaney and his wife, Carol, of Saco; Tom of Pownal; Patrick of Mount Desert, and a number of great-nieces and a great-nephew.
A Mass will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, December 12, 2015, at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, Bar Harbor. A reception with light refreshments will be held immediately thereafter at the church for family and friends. A burial will be held in the spring at Holy Redeemer Cemetery in Bar Harbor. Alice received loving and compassionate support from Carol McEnaney, members of Evergreen Manor and Life Choice Hospice. In lieu of flowers the Bar Harbor Food Pantry would be pleased with any donations in Alice’s name at 36 Mount Desert St., P.O. Box 434, Bar Harbor, ME 04609.