September 19, 2007
To Members of the Bowdoin Community,
I am deeply saddened to inform you of the death of Polly Greason, beloved wife of Bowdoin President Emeritus A. LeRoy Greason. A devoted mother and a person who will be long remembered for her contributions to Bowdoin College and this community, Polly passed away yesterday after a brief illness at the age of 83. Roy and the three Greason children were with Polly at the time of her death.
Polly and Roy were a true team during Roy’s long career as professor, dean, and president at Bowdoin. These were tumultuous years in America and at Bowdoin, and Polly was always there to support Roy both publicly and privately as he led our college. She was a thoughtful advisor and a tireless participant in the affairs of the College, traveling across America with Roy to visit with alumni clubs, volunteering in the Library and Special Collections, and being on hand for the countless and sometimes thankless duties expected of a president’s spouse. In the process, Polly earned the friendship, admiration, and respect of many in our community. A skilled librarian, Polly added a great deal to Bowdoin’s available research in local and college history, and was honored in 1990 by the Governing Boards with the naming of the Polly Greason Reading Room in Special Collections.
Polly was also a vigorous volunteer in the Brunswick community, having served as treasurer of the Abnaki Council of Girl Scouts, treasurer of the League of Women Voters, and a volunteer at the American Red Cross Blood Bank, the Curtis Memorial Library, and the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program. She also served on the Board of Directors of Respite Care, the Pejepscot Historical Society, and the Independence Association.
A native of Nutley, NJ, Polly was the valedictorian at her high school graduation in 1941. She went on the earn her undergraduate degree in 1945 at Wellesley College and her master’s degree in library science at the University of Maine at Portland-Gorham in 1974. Polly and Roy were married on December 29, 1945.
A memorial service for Polly Greason will be held on Friday, September 21, at 11:00 a.m. at the First Parish Church in Brunswick. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Polly’s memory to a charity of your choice. Condolences may be expressed to the family at the Brackett Funeral Home in Brunswick. Those wishing to write to Roy directly may do so at: 20 Birch Meadow Road, Brunswick, ME 04011.
Bowdoin is a stronger college today because of Polly Greason’s contributions, support, and involvement. We will miss her, but we will also remember her well. I know that each of you joins me in extending Bowdoin's sincere condolences to Roy, to Randall, Katherine, and Douglas, and to the rest of the Greason family.