Merilyn “Merry” Eustis

Merilyn “Merry” Eustis, 84, voyaged onward into the hands of our Lord on December 7, 2020. Her husband Ralph and family were at her side as she departed peacefully with a smile on her beautiful face. She was an inspiring, lovely and loving lady with an infectious personality that loved everyone.

            Beloved daughter of the late Norman and Dorothy Hodgson, Merry grew up in Portland, ME. It was there that she met her soul mate Ralph W. Eustis. Their 64-year voyage together as husband and wife, took them to live in places like Tokyo, Manhattan, California, and Washington DC. After Ralph retired from the Coast Guard, they settled in Mattapoisett in 1975 but embarked on many personal and professional adventures both on land and on sea.

            Merry was a lovely lady who brought happiness to everyone who touched her life; a lifelong wife, supporter, and companion to Ralph, a devoted mother to Ralph and Bill who had predeceased her. Merry especially enjoyed her role as grandmother to Heather and Stephen. She was happiest when she was with family and friends and sharing the joys of being alive whether it was with activities like sailing, skiing, adventuring around the world or just throwing a party so she could gather everyone together to celebrate. Aimhi Lodge in ME, where she spent her childhood summers, is one of her dearest spots. Her home and garden were her place to dream and relax from everyday stresses. She was an artist and an entrepreneur who founded Merrel Crafts in Washington DC and Eustis Design in Marion, MA, an interior design and architectural design firm. The New Bedford Chamber of Commerce named her the small business person of the year in 1989. Also, the Mass Senate honored her as the Small Business woman of the Year in 1991.

            Merry’s boundless energy extended throughout the Community. She was a founding member of the New Bedford Art Museum; the first to receive the New Bedford Symphony’s Friend of the Year award; a recipient of the Art Museum’s New Bedford Patrons of the Arts award; and the director of the Mattapoisett Yacht Club youth program.

            Survivors include her husband Ralph; her son Ralph III and his wife Karen of Mattapoisett, MA; granddaughter, Heather Eustis and fiancé Jacques Ray of NC; grandson, Stephen Eustis of NV; sister, Joelle Bentley of Stamford, CT; sister, Julie Broom and her husband Tony of Stony Creek, CT; brother-in-law, Gordon Eustis and his wife Joan of Lopez Island, WA; sister-in-law, Bette Ascheffenberg of Silver Spring, MD; and many beloved nieces, nephews, cousins, and many other extended family and friends.

            Due to COVID, a service will be held at a later date when it is safe to gather. It will take place at Mattapoisett Congregational Church and the interment will be after that at the Coast Guard Academy Memorial Chapel, the place where Merry and Ralph first met.

            One of Merry’s final wishes is that everyone takes time to reach out to anyone who is struggling with Alzheimer’s as well as their caregivers. Please offer whatever support you can.

            The family requests that any remembrances be sent to the New Bedford Art Museum Children’s Art Fund.

            Arrangements are by the Saunders-Dwyer Mattapoisett Home for Funerals, 50 County Rd., Mattapoisett. For online condolence book, please visit

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