Brookfield/West Palm Beach, FL – Gladys E. Porter, 97, passed on, in her beloved home, Friday, February 26, 2021, surrounded by family and friends. She was born in Worcester, MA, November 29, 1924 and she lived in Brookfield all of her life. Gladys was a kind, generous, loving spirit - her home was devoted to happiness, love and family. To know her was to love her. She made sure all family gatherings were with cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents. She was the heart that kept us together, then and now.
She took great pride growing roses, tending to her flower gardens, and making sure that we all helped plant and care for her vegetable patch. She loved springtime when the orioles, bluebirds and hummingbirds peeked in the window and saw mom’s beautiful smile and her amazement. Her real passion in life was reading and writing. Her hundreds of poems, compositions and short stories track her life from teen to the present. She also loved and collected books. In fact, she opened a small bookstore in 1968 at “Poor Richards” craft and gift shoppe at Sagendorph Farm in Brookfield.
Gladys and her beloved husband Clement loved Florida and the warm weather. They had a home first in Miami Beach in 1965, then finally settling in West Palm Beach. They both loved going to the horse and dog tracks. Mom was a real handicapper, playing her favorite dogs at the Palm Beach Kennel Club. We thank her Florida friends, Frank and Barbra Cornish who were great comfort and joy and always left her smiling and happy.
Diary entry, December 26, 1946 – “Now when I think of Christmas, the most wonderful present I ever received was the night you were born, a beautiful baby boy was given to me, my Christmas baby, we named him Clement.” Mom and Dad went on to have three more boys, James, Michael and Andrew, each loved and cherished equally. Their four sons were their pride and joy and it’s what they worked and lived for. A home of love, laughter and happiness.
Gladys is survived by her sons, Clement H. Porter, II and James M. Porter and his wife Bonnie; grandchildren, Jamie Porter of Wintergarden FL, Jason Porter of Charlton; great-grandchildren, Jordon, Jacee and Kennedy; great-great grandchild, Monty. Her special niece and godchild, Shiela Fortier, who she loved like a daughter; sister-in-law, Audrey Flannery; nephews, James, Michael and Jeffery Flannery; daughter-in-law and friend, Judy Flannery; lifelong friend, Paul White whose caring, company and conversation always made her day, as well as John Buzzy White and her nephew, Ronnie Lucier.
Gladys was preceded by her loving husband of 67 years, Clement (Mike) Porter; sons, Michael and Andrew Porter; brothers Phil and James Flannery; sister Claire Lucier; nephews Philly, Kevin and Brian Flannery, sister-in-law Margaret (Serry) Flannery and niece and godchild Kim Flannery.
Mom’s last request, was to include her “True Love Story” first published in the Brookfield Citizen, ten years ago. “I was 16 and lived in the country, he was 18 and lived in the city. We met at a birthday party on Valentine’s Day. When he walked in the door, my crush began. We saw each other a few times after that, and then drifted apart. World War II came, he joined the Coast Guard, I didn’t see him again for three years. I thought of him many times and hoped that I would see him again. One day, I received a phone call at my place of work, and it was him. He wanted me to come to the city and meet, my heart was pounding, I said yes. When I saw him, he had been wounded in the war on Normandy Beach, he received the Purple Heart for bravery and was waiting to get discharged. After that, we saw each other every weekend. My girl hood crush became real, one year later we were married, I was 20 and he was 22. Now years later my heart still skips a beat when he walks through the door. Through the good times, bad times and happy times, we survived. Now the love of my life is no longer with me, I’ll always have beautiful memories to look back on, he went on his journey, two years ago, he was 88. When it is time for me to join him, I won’t be afraid because I know he will be waiting. He will open the door, my heart will skip a beat, he will smile and take my hand, we will walk down a new path wherever it takes us, together again.”
So, to all you husbands, wives, friends and lovers - laugh, live and love, but most of all be happy.
A Remembrance for Gladys will be held this summer with family and friends.
Varnum Funeral Home, Inc., 43 East Main St., in West Brookfield is assisting her family with arrangements.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Gladys E. (Flannery) Porter, please visit our floral store.