2016-08-12 / Obituaries

Margarete Driver

Dr. Margarete K. M. Driver passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family, on July 30 at home in Goose Rocks Beach, Kennebunkport. She was 78.

Margarete was born in Ludwigshafen am Rhein, Germany, and grew up in Weinheim an der Bergstrasse, Germany. Her parents, Johann and Gertrud Schumacher predeceased her.

She was married on Dec. 31, 1957 in Heidelberg, Germany, to her husband of 58 years, Richard.

Margarete attended Heidelberg University; she earned a master’s degree and PhD in German language and literature from Rutgers University and a master’s degree in formal linguistics from New York University.

The Drivers spent their professional careers in New Jersey, residing in Franklin Township, Somerset County for 39 years. Dr. Driver taught at Rutgers University and later rose to the rank of full professor at Middlesex County College. She retired in 2005 with the honorary title of Professor Emirita. At the time of her retirement Margarete established a scholarship to provide for students majoring in modern languages.

Aside from her family, teaching was her greatest love and joy. Retirement meant a separation from the classroom and students. It left a void. Never a person to suffer idleness easily, Margarete looked for ways to give back. She often said hers was a blessed life.

She began volunteering at Southern Maine Medical Center and later became a volunteer at the Maine Medical Center cancer ward. Along the way she trained to work with abused women and manned the crisis line at Caring Unlimited for six years.

Her love of art led her to become a board member of River Tree Arts and a docent at the Portland Museum of Art. Margarete regularly conducted tours of the Winslow Homer Studio at Prouts Neck for the Portland Museum of Art.

Margarete’s thirst for art took many forms, including a love of nature. Often in hiking boots, she and her husband spent many vacations climbing the Austrian Alps and the Italian Dolomites. The beauty of those mountains was a magnet.

Margarete is survived by her husband Richard; daughters Deana Driver of Birdsboro, Pennsylvania, Kirsten Driver of Hazlet, New Jersey, and Heather Rheinbolt and husband Joshua of Davidson, North Carolina; grandchildren Thomas Lovas Jr., and Jackson, Coco, Cosette and Jolie Rheinbolt; her brother Dipl.-Ing. Hans-Joachim Schumacher and niece Karin Schumacher and nephew Marcus Schumacher.

Contributions in Margarete’s memory may be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 3 International Drive, Ste. 200, Rye Brook, NY 10573 or www.lls.org or Caring Unlimited, PO Box 590, Sanford, ME 04073.

“My days are as happy as those reserved by God for his elect; and whatever be my fate hereafter, I can never say that I have not tasted joy – the purest joy of life.”

Goethe Services, at Margarete’s request, are to be private.

To share a memory or leave a message of condolence, please visit Margarete’s Book of Memories Page at bibberfuneral.com.

Arrangements are in care of Bibber Memorial Chapel, Kennebunk.

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