From the material of a rich and varied 92-year life, Constance Genevieve Dahlen Jones knit together a family and body of friends grateful for intelligence and generosity. At her death the morning of March 23, 2020, she resided in Freeport.
Connie, as she was known throughout her life, was born in Stockholm, Maine, on Sept. 26, 1927. At birth, her parents of Swedish descent lived in a far northeastern part of Maine’s Aroostook County in a community of Swedes where many family members still reside.
Her parents, Andrew Dahlen and Magnhild Myhr, had five children, including an infant son, Andrew Alden, who passed before Constance was born. She was predeceased by two younger siblings, Antoria Grant and Marvin Dahlen, and by her husband, William David Jones. She is survived by sister Karen Hall and her sons, Kevin and Kyle. Her youngest son, Reid, passed away in December of 2019.
In 1936, the young Dahlen family moved to Patten. After graduating from Patten Academy, Connie worked at Atlas Plywood Corp.’s mill.
After William Jones returned from France, where he served during World War II, he and Connie were married. They moved to Crawfordsville, Ind., where “Bill” attended Wabash College and where Kevin was born. Upon Bill’s graduation, the new family relocated to Houlton, where Bill taught high school history. Kyle was born in Houlton shortly before Bill moved the family to Bar Harbor to accept the position of general secretary of that famous town’s YMCA.
As a mother and homemaker, Connie waited until her sons were grown before re-entering the workforce as a manager at the Maine Seacoast Missionary Society, serving the material and spiritual needs of Maine’s outer islands.
In the ’80s, and already the grandmother of Zachary, Maiysha, Hannah, Jared and Alyssa, Connie attended Orono’s University of Maine, from which she graduated in 1983. She soon began teaching kindergarten at the Nathan Clifford School in Portland, from which she retired. During that time, she and Bill resided in Freeport, where she volunteered at its thrift shop.
A lifelong musician, accomplished as a pianist, Connie sang in Bar Harbor’s Congregational Church choir and in the highly regarded Acadia Choral Society. Famous in the family as an accomplished quilter and knitter, she continued her mother’s tradition of gifting children, nieces and nephews with masterful winter-wear. She loved visiting, hosting and traveling with family. Bill took her to Bill’s birthplace in Wales. Her travel highlight came when she accompanied her father, siblings and nieces to Sweden and Norway.
Among the gifts she shared freely was an adventurous talent for cooking and baking. Without quite matching them, her sons and grandchildren uphold her skills and spirit. Her Swedish rye rolls were Dahlen family favorites. Her chocolate chip date nut muffins were downright addictive. By all accounts, neither have been successfully replicated. Her life will be remembered fondly.