Nancy Hill Payne

FALMOUTH — Nancy Hill Payne, 94, of Falmouth died April 6, 2012, after a brief illness at Maine Medical Center. Nancy ran at full throttle, engaged in life, her community and her family. She was an author, painter, state legislator and community activist.

Born an identical twin in 1918 in Jamaica Plain, Mass., she was the daughter of Dr. Lewis Webb Hill and Pauline Dexter Hill.

A 1936 graduate of the Winsor School and an art history major in the Class of ’41 at Radcliffe College, Nancy married William Hancock Payne Jr. of Wynnewood, Pa., in 1942. Together they raised four children having lived in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts before settling in Portland in 1950. She was active in many civic organizations and, most recently, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Southern Maine. In 1978, she became the first Republican legislator to be elected from Portland in 16 years. She also served as a GOP county and state committee member. In 1984, she was elected at the state convention to represent Maine on the Republican National Committee. At the age of 79, she wrote and self-published two books, “Widowing, a Guide to Another Life” and “Phoenix/Maine,” a novel that focused on “creating greater bipartisanship in politics and civility in all relationships.”

She was predeceased by her husband, William; and her twin sister, Penelope Dwinell of Dedham, Mass. She is survived by her daughter, Nancy P. Alexander of Ellsworth; and her sons, William H. Payne III and his wife, Elizabeth, of Boxford, Mass., Lewis H. Payne and his wife, Clare, of Holden, and Anthony M. Payne and his wife, Grace, of Falmouth. In addition, she was the proud grandmother of Abigail Alexander and her husband, Chad Goodwin, of Hollywood, Fla., William Payne IV and his wife, Christa, of Chattanooga, Tenn., Nell Dailey and her husband, Andrew, of Warren, John Payne of Brooklyn, N.Y., Julia Bailin, her husband, Daniel Bailin and Edward Payne, all of Portland and Hank, Halsey and Gordon Payne of Falmouth. She also had five great-grandchildren with two more on the way!

A fun and loving memorial celebration for friends and family will be held at 1:00 p.m., Saturday, May 12, 2012, in the new Wishcamper Center, the home of OLLI, at the University of Southern Maine in Portland. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts can be made to OLLI or your favorite charity.

Know when to pay your respects.