Isabel K. Chiquoine

Isabel K. Chiquoine (Ibby), a long-time resident of Clinton, NY, died September 2, 2018 at her home in Ayer, MA, at the age of 91.

She was born July 2, 1927, in Jackson, Michigan, to parents Charles F. Kellers and Elizabeth Acheson Kellers, and grew up in Montclair, NJ. Ibby graduated from Swarthmore College, where she embraced the Quaker values that inspired her throughout her life. There she met her life partner, A. Duncan Chiquoine. The two were married in 1950.

Ibby earned her Master’s degree in microbiology from Cornell University, and she and Duncan proceeded to raise a growing family in several college towns—Princeton, NJ; St. Louis, MO, and Clinton, NY—where Duncan’s teaching positions led them, finally committing to Clinton NY where she could be near her sister, Berty and keep the cousins close.

While raising 5 children (Stephen, Christopher, Timothy, Kenneth, and Katherine), Ibby seized on opportunities to support the schools and the community, and make the world a better place. For her, it was never enough to simply hold a belief; turning beliefs into action was her guiding principle.

Her family recalls that she never slept. She was up when they awoke and when they went to bed—whenever that was. Most mornings, Ibby could be found in her garden, in her study keeping up with all of the news, or at her desk writing letters to government officials at all levels to encourage them to take action for equality and peace.

She volunteered each day (walking wherever she went), sharing her love for learning and reading with the children at Clinton Elementary, at Sunday school or at peace camp. A weekly Peace Vigil on the town green, teaching sexuality education at Planned Parenthood and at the high school, and engaging prison inmates in conflict resolution were also part of her routine. In between, she served on boards and actively worked for decades for the values and organizations that she felt could make a difference: The Jack Boynton Pool in Clinton, The League of Women Voters, and the Quaker Meeting—to name just a few. As busy as she was, Ibby was always there for her family; she was up for whatever her children and grandchildren wanted to explore, and quietly led us all to be better people by her example.

Ibby lived simply, was down-to-earth, patient, and persistent—not a Pollyanna—but a hope-filled person who was in it for the long haul and believed deeply that change is possible. In everything, she was guided by her profound belief that there is a light within each of us.

Ibby is survived by her daughter Katherine Stamm and husband John-Paul, her sons: Stephen and wife Eleanor, Christopher and wife Nancy, Timothy and wife Jody, and Kenneth and wife Selinda. She leaves 9 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild. She also leaves her sister and brother-in-law, Bertha and William Morehouse, and sisters-in-law Jean Chiquoine and Ada Kellers. She was predeceased by Duncan, her husband of 65 years, and her brother C. Frederick Kellers.

Our family wishes to thank the kind and engaging caregivers at Nashoba Park in Ayer, where Ibby lived for the past two years.

Ibby was passionate about making this world a better place. To honor her, our family encourages people to work wholeheartedly for the causes they believe in. If you would like to contribute to causes that were important to Ibby, please consider a gift to The Clinton Youth Foundation, PO Box 32, Clinton, NY 13323, The American Friends Service Committee, 1501 Cherry Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102-1403, or UNICEF, 125 Maiden Lane, NY, NY 10038. On-line messages for the family may be left by clicking below.


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5 Condolences

  1. Barbara Gold on September 16, 2018 at 7:09 pm

    Dear Family of Ibby,

    I knew Ibby through the Mohawk Valley Friends Meeting. She was always an inspiration to us all, with her dedication to peace, justice and so many important social causes and her patient, calm, and determined demeanor. She was always down at the Clinton town green every week at peace vigils. Quaker meeting without Ibby seems a lonelier place. Her obituary captures her spirit so well – thank you. I am holding her and you all in the light.

  2. Kate Brennan on September 17, 2018 at 5:14 pm

    Dear Family,
    I didn’t know Ibby, but I spoke with her daughter-in-law today on the phone at AFSC. She happened to mention her obituary posted here, and I’m so glad she did. I loved reading about her extraordinary life, and her various methods for expressing her commitment to creating peace in our world. I also love the photo you chose. *HONK!* My condolences to you all, and my appreciation for your sharing a little about her with me. Holding you in light.

  3. Vicki Haines on September 19, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    I knew Ibby for many years through the Mohawk Valley Friends’ Meeting. She was always a source of great strength, compassion, and kindness. Quakers often speak about the concept of “clearness” and that’s something I associate with Ibby. She spoke and acted from inner clarity and shared that with all of us privileged to know her. Her light will carry on.

  4. Mary Donald on September 19, 2018 at 8:55 pm

    A great lady, I will miss her

  5. Marcys on September 20, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    We will always remember:

    * gardening
    * composting
    * grapes
    * tomatoes
    * teaching reading
    * Mohawk Valley Society of Friends
    * ice cream cones
    * cookies
    * Agway cheese
    * Planned Parenthood
    * Kirkland Town Library
    * rides on back of bike
    * coffee times/hot and iced (with ice cream)
    * hot tomato soup at “Meeting”
    * shoveling snow
    * raking leaves and jumping in piles
    * Cider Mill
    * taffy and “Rudolph”
    * handmade ornaments and decorating christmas cookies
    * bridge games
    * bees and honey
    * Christmas morning breakfasts
    * mud pies
    * “snails” and “Volkswagon” dressing
    * teaching bike riding
    * pool
    * piling in the van for back to school shopping
    * sledding
    * being part of the family
    * never having to knock

    Wow, were we ever lucky!

    Much love always!

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