Debby Nance lost her four-year battle with cancer on March 4, surrounded by a loving family. She passed peacefully at her home in Beverly. Debby will be remembered as an outgoing, fun-loving individual who made everyone feel like they belonged. An avid gardener, she started graduate school at the age of 54, receiving a certificate in landscape design from Radcliffe and went on to design lovely gardens for many residences, including her own. She was also employed by Corliss Brothers Garden Center in Ipswich, consulting and advising many clients regarding their own gardens. Flowers were omnipresent in her home. Not a day went by when she wasn’t creating beautiful floral arrangements for family and friends to enjoy.
Debby is survived by her husband of forty-one years, Raymond; daughters, Rachel Malde of Sewanee, Tennessee, and Lindsay Calef of Georgetown, MA; their husbands, Pradip Malde and Craig Calef; grandsons, Luca Malde and Kiran Malde; brother, Duncan Leith of Holden, MA; and sister, Gretchen Prunier, of Worcester. Debby’s brother, Donald Leith, preceded her in death. She completely adored her family, and particularly loved being with them at “Camp”, her family’s home on Laurel Lake in New Hampshire. A favorite activity was doing “projects” with her two grandsons. Whether it was through a science experiment or a hands-on project, she taught them the joy of the natural world and the creative process.
Debby was born in Worcester, MA on November 29, 1944. She attended high school in Worcester and graduated from Wheaton College (Norton, MA) in 1966 with a B.A. in American History. Prior to becoming a landscape designer, she worked as an elementary school teacher and a real estate agent. She and Raymond were married in 1976 and lived in New Orleans, LA, Covington, LA, and Leesburg, VA, before moving to Beverly in 1997.
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