Obituary: Jacquelyn R. Brooks – Portland Press Herald



Jacquelyn R. Brooks

SOUTH BERWICK – Jacquelyn R. Brooks, affectionately known as “Jackie”, left family and friends on Friday June 25, 2021. Born August 2, 1933 in Dracut, Mass. of Daniel and Louise (Sturgeon) Hilliard, she was in the midst of a crew of seven siblings. She also had a half-sister, Phyllis Weberson.

His family moved to South Berwick, Maine from Lowell, Mass. in his high school years. It was there that she would meet the love of her life and best friend, Vernon ‘Buddy’ Brooks. They lived 62 years of happy marriage with their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Family is really what they lived for!

Jackie was an extremely hard worker who spent her career in various shoe factories in the area. She completed her years of working as a valued foreman at Duchess Footwear right here in her hometown of South Berwick. She made many friends during her time at the factory and throughout her life with whom she remained in close contact after her retirement. His generosity and concern were limitless. She was known to help others, even those she didn’t know.

Jackie had an extreme sense of humor and was known for her personal jokes such as; “Have a bag – I’ll travel!” “,” I got kicked out of the best places! “,” Don’t threaten to have a good time! And others not suitable for printing. Several times Buddy, shaking his head, was heard to say, “Oh Jackie!”

In her early years, she could be quite the mischief maker with any brother brave enough on any given day to go with her. One incident in particular involved her remaining sister Nancy Pebbles and her husband Tom at the former Pease AFB Enough said here to protect the less innocent! (Smile) Even though she was 99% a law-abiding citizen, she was known to sometimes get behind the wheel of an unsuspecting vehicle for reasons justified by herself alone. Fortunately, these events were rare and all survived unscathed.

Our beloved daughter was a shopaholic and always dressed to perfection! It could be frustrating when we have a tight schedule to hear, “I just need to change one more time. Any woman in the family could call anytime to ask for the right item of clothing or accessory and be sure it was in Jackie’s spacious closet.

She loved special holidays and family traditions that have passed through the years, such as Friday night hot dog dinners. This particular ritual had such an impact that it was continued by her eldest daughter Marcia with Sunday evening dinners at her home that lasted for many years and continue to this day! No one could compete with their oft-requested mac and cheese, fried haddock, and pepper steak subs.

Although Jackie is no longer physically present, she has left a legacy of dedication, kindness, integrity, humor and family love that will be passed on by those fortunate enough to call her; “Mom”, “Sister”, “Nana”, “Grande-Nana” and “Friend”!

She is survived by two daughters, Marcia Syvinski of South Berwick and Dawn Brownell. She leaves behind five cherished grandchildren, Paula Renaud (Billy Renaud) of South Berwick, Jessica Morley (Christopher Morley) of Houlton, Valerie Currier (Chad Currier) of Berwick, Daniel and Jarrod Brownell. Her extended family includes eight great-grandchildren, Johnathon, Rebecca and Kayla Renaud; Phillip, William, Jacquelyn (its namesake) and Thomas Morley, and Blake Currier. Also, her sister Nancy Pebbles and her husband Tom of Anderson, SC

She was predeceased by loving husband Vernon ‘Buddy’ Brooks and darling son-in-law Michael Syvinski. She is also predeceased by brothers Daniel Hilliard, Robert Hilliard, James Hilliard and Gordon Hilliard, as well as sisters Barbara Hilliard Smith and Julia Hilliard Weare.

Memorial services are under the direction of Johnson Funeral Home in North Berwick, Maine. Due to irreconcilable family circumstances, calling hours are split. Friends and acquaintances of Marcia Syvinski and family can call Friday July 2 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Friends and acquaintances of Dawn Brownell and family can call Friday July 2 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Private family funeral on Saturday 3 July.

Family flowers only please.

Condolences can be expressed at

If you would like to honor Jackie’s memory, we ask that you make a donation to the Alzheimer’s Association of Maine or perform a random act of kindness.

in memory of Jackie

Golden Book


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