Shirley L. Mai, 93, most recently of Exeter, NH went to “play with the angels” on December 5, 2022. She died, as she lived, on her own terms with her family by her side.
Born in Derry, NH on March 15, 1929 to Henry and Irene (Trombley) Gagnon, she was the youngest of seven children. Shirley grew up on a farm and loved to run and play in the surrounding creek and woods.
She dedicated her life to serving others as doting wife, mother, aunt, and grandmother. She was the first in her family to earn a college degree leading to a long career as a registered nurse. She loved working in the operating room and later worked in long-term care facilities; she excelled in her profession. Shirley was also a talented seamstress, gardener, and baked an array of amazing desserts. She was a strong, independent woman and the matriarch of her family.
Shirley met and married the love of her life, Paul Mai, in 1957. Together they raised three children and many family pets. She lost her loving husband in 2019. She was also the last remaining member of her family’s generation; her siblings Victoria, Elizabeth, Theresa, Claire, Josephine, and Henry predeceased her. Surviving family members include her son, Michael Mai of Pooler, GA; daughter Kristina Mai of Exeter, NH; daughter Kathryn Mai and her partner Thomas Murphy of Waterbury Center, VT; grandson Matthew Mai of Dover, NH; and many nieces and nephews who were also loved dearly and a big part of her life. She will be missed immensely, especially her almost hourly inquiries to make sure her chickadees were ok. Yes, mom, we’ll be careful and no, we don’t need a throw.
A service will be held in the chapel at the NH State Veterans Cemetery, 110 Daniel Webster Highway, Boscawen, on Friday, December 9, 2022 at 1pm.
In lieu of flowers donations in Shirley’s memory can be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital; https://stjude.org or to Rockingham Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice; https://exeterhospital.com