BAR HARBOR – Esther Mary Howe Mun, 93, died peacefully at her home with family by her side on March 8, 2017. The daughter of Edward and Elsie Howe was born on a farm in Leroy, Ind. She was the third of seven children. Esther attended a two-room elementary school and graduated from Crown Point High School in Indiana. She received a Bachelor of Science Degree in elementary education from Ball State Teaching College. After eight years of teaching grade school in Ohio and Indiana, Esther enrolled at Indiana University, where she received her Master of Science Degree in education and where she met her husband, Alton. They were happily married 39 years and had five children. They lived in Indiana, Washington and Maryland. They finally settled in Maine, where Alton taught zoology at the University of Maine at Orono. In 1972, they purchased Woodland Park Cottages in Bar Harbor, and moved there permanently in 1985. Their family continues to operate the cottages.
Esther was a positive, loving and caring person who was deeply devoted to her family, friends and community. She taught her children fairness, patience and to always look for the good in people. Although quiet and reserved, she still had a competitive streak that came out in simple situations like playing cards or racing her son around the driveway with a walker at the age of 90! Her greatest joy was spending time with her family. She hosted many reunions for the Howe and Mun families that grew to 100-plus people. Her hobbies included reading, listening to music, hiking, volunteering, watching “Pride and Prejudice” (the BBC version!) and playing games, especially the card game “Hand-Knee-and Foot.” She never lost the desire to learn and grow as a person. She enjoyed reading nonfiction books, attending Acadia Senior College, taking Elderhostel trips, having philosophical discussions with her family and traveling. In 1993, when Esther learned that a new territory would be created in upper Canada, she enrolled at the Nunavut Arctic College in an Elderhostel class. Esther was fortunate enough to travel all over the globe, visiting China, Japan, New Zealand, Australia and Canada as well as Hawaii, Alaska and much of the continental United States.
Esther was very involved in her community, volunteering for Meals on Wheels, Literacy Volunteers, Bar Harbor Garden Club, MDI Hospital Auxiliary, American Association of University Women, and Island Connections.
She was predeceased by her loving husband, Alton; brothers Bill, Victor and Edward, and sisters Helen and Alice. Esther is survived by her sister Ruth, and her five children Alvin, Paul, Sarah, Carl and Kam. She is also survived by her 12 grandchildren: Andy, Patrick, Bradley, Chris, Jennifer, Katie, Karen, Melissa, Adam, Alyssa, Kyle, Evan and four great-grandchildren.
At the request of Esther, there will be no funeral. Esther has chosen to donate her body for the advancement of medical science and research at the University of New England’s College of Osteopathic Medicine.
In her memory, donations may be made to the University of Maine at Orono or Acadia Senior College.
We would like to invite friends and family to join with us in a celebration of her life on March 18 at 10 a.m. at Eden Baptist Church Parish Hall, 158 Old Bar Harbor Road, Bar Harbor.