Died: April 24, 2020
Married: Thomas B. Cantwell
Children: Penny, Sue, Gale Plunket, Frances B., T. Barry, William W., Robert A., Edmond A.
Ann Cantwell, neé Winslow, was born in April of 1923. She grew up in Cherry Valley, New York, where she remembers visiting her grandparents and picking berries. She played competitive golf in many northern New York women’s leagues and was a runner up in the New York State Championship. She attended Sargent College at Boston University. Her success in the sport resulted in a New York Times article being written about her.
This article caught the eye of Thomas B . Cantwell in Saranac Lake, who wrote Ann and suggested applying for the job opening as a Physical Education instructor at the local school. Thomas was waiting for Ann when she came up on the train, and Ann says, “it was love at first sight”. Ann was 25 when she came to Saranac Lake in 1947, and she and Thomas were married in 1948.
Ann and Thomas bought 120 Forest Hill Avenue from his father, Francis B. Cantwell, and they built many subsequent additions. Ann had eight children within 12 years: Penny, Sue, Gale, Francis, Berry, Bill, Bob, and Ted (Edmond). Ann talked about how difficult it was raising eight children, and how the older kids would often be given responsibility of the younger kids. They spent summers on Lower Saranac Lake canoeing, swimming, sailing, and water skiing. Her husband Thomas helped develop several ski areas in Saranac Lake and Ann remembers helping to build the Saranac Lake Civic Center . She says "I love animals, and I love people, and I love my family, and my grandchildren, and my great-grandchildren."
To listen to an interview with Ann, visit the Historic Saranac Lake Oral History Project website.
Adirondack Daily Enterprise, April 28, 2020
Ann Winslow Cantwell ascended to Heaven on April 24, 2020.
She was born on April 22, 1923, in Frankfurt to Pauline Lennebacher Winslow and Chester J. Winslow. Ann attended Frankfurt public schools and graduated from Sargent College of Boston University in 1945 with a bachelor’s degree in physical education. Ann taught for two years in Niagara Falls and then for one year in the Saranac Lake school system.
She met her beloved husband Thomas Barry Cantwell Sr. when he contacted her after reading an article in the newspaper of her golfing and skiing prowess. They were married in 1948. Tom predeceased Ann at the age of 61 in 1977.
Ann maintained her excellence in golf from age 10 to 86. She was the club champion for many years at the Saranac Lake Golf and Country Club. Her play on the course was extraordinarily smooth and applauded by many. Ann was the New York State Golf Association’s Women’s Amateur Champion runner-up twice. She made three holes in one at Saranac Lake Golf and Country Club and held the course record for Women’s Low Gross. Ann won many local championships and many women’s inter-club matches.
Ann’s other passions were bridge, all sports, skiing and especially hockey. Ann was active in the hockey community for 60 years. She and Thomas B. Cantwell helped make the Saranac Lake Civic Center a reality in its formative years. She was very proud to see it come to fruition.
Ann was very passionate about her Christian faith and was active in the St. Luke’s Episcopal Church Ladies Guild and Altar Guild. She was a fixture at the church’s Budget Box for many years. Another passion was volunteerism: Tag Day, Cancer Society, Adirondack Medical Center and Meals on Wheels. She was very generous to numerous local and national civic organizations.
Ann was predeceased by her parents, her brothers Charles and Chester Winslow and their spouses. She was additionally predeceased by her sister Dorothy Winslow Nicastro and her husband Cross Nicastro, and Ann’s first-born daughter Penny Cantwell.
Ann’s greatest joy was raising her eight children and filling them with everlasting love. Her surviving children include Sue Trepanier (Patrick), Gale Plunket (James C.), Frances Shepard (Jeffrey), Thomas Barry Cantwell (Margaret), William Cantwell, Robert Cantwell (Donna) and Edmond A. “Ted” Cantwell (Cynthia).
She delighted in her grandchildren: McKenzie Cantwell Jones (Tim), Claire Cantwell Jones (Andrew), Meghan Cantwell Jackson (Trevor), James C. “Jake” Plunket (Jess), Molly Plunket Gwynn (Cade), Thomas E. Trepanier, Eric M. Trepanier, Thomas A. Cantwell (Magdelaine), Ann E. Cantwell (Eric Telfer), Sarah Cantwell Knapp (Andrew), Emily Cantwell Clayton (Jon).
Ann was especially fond of her great-grandchildren: Kendra Elise Jones, Liam Oliver Jones, Jackson Ayers Gywnn, Zoe Belle Gwynn, Reagan James Plunket, Cooper Nash Plunket, Noelle Genevieve Jones, Emmon Gabriel Jones, Luca Barry Jackson, Annika Daveigh Jackson, Delaney Ryann Knapp, Ella Winslow Knapp and William August Telfer.
Ann is also survived by her nieces and nephews Charles Nicastro (Betsy), Mark Nicastro, Cross Nicastro, Debbie Nicastro Kinney, Paula Nicastro Tynes, Providenza Nicastro Fraccola, Samantha Nicastro Otterness, Mike Winslow, Maria Winslow Folts, and Judy Winslow, Peter Cantwell, Christopher Cantwell and Rebecca Cantwell of Colorado. The Colorado family are Ann’s brother-in-law William P. Cantwell and Hendrika Cantwell.
Ann’s home on Moody Pond and her summer cottage on Rainbow Lake were always replete with good food and good fun, and all were welcome. There were so many great memories. She was always involved with her community as well and tried to make Saranac Lake a better place to live and thrive. She will be greatly missed. One or her favorite sayings was, “Live each day to its fullest.” Ann was many things in life. The best of which was a loving mother and a kind mindful soul.
John 3:16 reads, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Funeral arrangements are in care of the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home in Saranac Lake. There will be no calling hours, at Ann’s request. A celebration of Ann’s life will take place at the Cantwell Community Room at the Saranac Free Library at a later date that will be announced. Ann requested that any donations in her name be given to the Saranac Lake Free Library, the Saranac Lake Hockey Association or the Women’s College Scholarship Fund.