FALMOUTH -- Mary Jean Pearce, of Falmouth, died peacefully on January 7, 2017, at Falmouth By The Sea. She was 92. Mary Jean grew up in Portland and attended college in Boston. She was a longtime Falmouth resident and parishioner at Holy Martyrs Church. Her husband of 64 years, D. Duane Pearce, was for many years manager of Howard A. Pearce Associates, general agency in Maine for the Mutual of Omaha insurance company. He passed away on January 31, 2014, at the age of 89. Mary Jean was born on December 20, 1924, to Joseph and Urania Little of Portland. She attended Deering High School, Westbrook Junior College, and Jackson College for Women (now part of Tufts University), where in 1947 she received her BA in economics. After graduation, she worked in Boston for the Houghton Mifflin publishing company, where she recalled meeting John Dos Passos and other authors. Following her engagement to Duane, Mary Jean moved back to Portland where she taught school, including braille to a blind student at Waynflete School. After their marriage on September 10, 1949, and a brief residence in Portland, Mary Jean and Duane moved to Falmouth in 1951, where they raised five children. Mary Jean never lost her childhood sense of wonder. She loved to read, and referred to the old family books in her living rooms glass-front antique secretary as my friends. She told her children stories about their ancestors, and what they did, and where they lived. She always made time to spotlight the marvels residing in the nooks and crannies of everyday life -- whether extolling fiddlehead greens, or taking Cub Scouts to tour the BM Baked Bean factory, or explaining why chickadees love suet, or fashioning a home-made door wreath out of pine cone kernels, milk weed pods, and other fruit of the fields. She matched this restless intellectual curiosity with great zest for life and an indomitable spirit. For her, everything was possible -- if you just worked hard and put in your best effort, and then kept at it until you succeeded. This tenacious resolve made her a fierce competitor, whether at golf or cards or life. An athletic and avid golfer, she was a member of the Portland Country Club for over 60 years. She frequently shot in the 80s and participated in many statewide tournaments. She loved her garden, dancing, art, nature, painting, bridge, and genealogy. She was an excellent cook; and her children and grandchildren will always remember her cranberry nut bread, home-made hash, and apple pie with the mouth-watering secret family crust. For many years Mary Jean taught at the Cerebral Palsy Center in Portland. She also volunteered at Baxter School for the Deaf, and she and Duane delivered Meals on Wheels in the Greater Portland area. In addition to her husband, Mary Jean was predeceased by her sons, Jonathan R. Pearce and Christopher S. Pearce; and her grandson, Michael D. Pearce. She is survived by two sons, David D. Pearce and his wife Leyla of Yarmouth, Michael J. Pearce and his wife Kathleen of Falmouth; daughter, Elizabeth P. Hunt and husband George Cushing of Portland and Newmarket, NH; daughter-in-law, Robyn Pearce (Jonathan) of New Gloucester; grandchildren, Jennifer Pearce (and husband Rob Maloy), Joseph Pearce, Timothy Pearce, Stephanie Pearce, Alexandra Hunt and Thomas Hunt; and great-grandchildren, Matthew Maloy, David Maloy, Daiden Graves and Brady Michael Pearce. Visiting hours will be held from 5-7 PM on Friday, January 13, 2017, at the Conroy-Tully Walker Funeral Home, 172 State Street, Portland. Prayers will be recited at the funeral home on Saturday, January 14, at 10:15 AM followed by an 11 AM Mass of Christian Burial at Holy Martyrs Church, 266 Foreside Rd, Falmouth. Burial will occur at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made in Mary Jeans memory to the Holy Martyrs Church, 266 Foreside Rd, Falmouth, ME 04105.