ONEONTA – Maria Barbara (Krause) Devlin, 82, who co-owned the Golden Rooster gift shop on Main Street while her husband taught at SUNY Oneonta, passed away Oct. 19, 2019, at Lawrence (Mass.) General Hospital from complication of lymphoma.
She recently resided in North Andover, Mass., and Venice, Fla.
She was born to Otto and Martha Krause in 1937 in Breslau, a German city lost to Poland after World War II. When the Russian army moved into Breslau, her mother fled with Maria and her younger brother.
They narrowly escaped death in one instance by her mother’s ability to speak Polish with sufficient fluency to convince a Russian soldier that the family was not German. The Krauses were reunited after the war in the village of Stockach, Germany.
Once she had made her Abitur – college prep courses in Germany, Maria sought to improve her English by establishing correspondence with an American student. This turned out to be Jim Devlin, of Brighton, Mass., who was then a student at Harvard. Their correspondence led to their meeting and to a nearly 50-year marriage that ended with Jim’s death in 2011.
Upon Jim’s completion of military service, Maria, Jim and their two young boys moved to Oneonta, where Jim had taken a teaching position in SUNY Oneonta’s English Department. The family settled in the City of the Hills, where their sons attended public schools. Maria co-owned the Golden Rooster with her close friend Patricia Devine.
After Jim’s retirement from the college, Jim and Maria divided their time between Venice, Fla., and Kennebunk, Maine, and traveled extensively. Maria moved to North Andover following Jim’s death to be nearer family.
Maria’s life was centered in art and music. She loved language and was fluent in English, German and, earlier in her life, French. She read constantly. She was widely familiar with European music from the 18th through 20th centuries, and contributed her strong alto voice to the St. Mary’s choir and to the Community Chorale, with which she toured Europe performing Bach’s St. Matthew Passion. She acted and sang in plays and musicals in and around Oneonta.
She is survived by her son, Dr. Peter Devlin of North Andover, and his wife, Dr. Arlene Curran, her son attorney Christopher Devlin of Portland, Maine, and his wife Julia Sheridan, also an attorney, and by five grandchildren, Margaret and Catherine Devlin and Nicholas, Timothy and Claire Devlin.
A funeral mass will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 26,at St. Michael’s Church in North Andover, followed by interment at Holy Cross Cemetery in Malden, Mass.
In lieu of gifts or flowers, contributions to the YMCA in the name of Maria B. Devlin can be sent to 360 Merrimack St. Suite 270, Lawrence, MA 01843, or link to Memorial Giving – Merrimack Valley YMCA