Anne Marie Reine de Bourbon Downes passed away on February 7, 2023 at the age of 99 at home in Gilboa, NY. surrounded by her family.
Born January 3, 1924 in Mamaroneck, NY, Anne was the second oldest and only daughter of four siblings. Her brothers, all of whom have predeceased her, were Phillipe de Bourbon; Renaud Bruce; and Louis de Bourbon. Her parents had immigrated from France: father, Charles de Bourbon, an importer/exporter and mother, M. Reine Cantau-Bruce, an educator and early graduate student at Yale.
From a young age, Anne’s artistic abilities and friendly spirit shone brightly and were to shape her life. Her high school years were spent in Connecticut with teachers from the French order of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit at the Putnam Catholic School Academy and later graduated from St. Michael’s in New York City. She then attended art school in Manhattan. Following news of her brother, Phillipe’s POW status during WWII, the day she reached enlistment age in 1944 she traded her Air Warden responsibilities in New York City for the United States Marine Corps. Among the first women in the Corps at the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station, despite her slight build, she drove huge convoy trucks between bases in California.
She met her first husband Richard L. Hudson in the Marines and they later moved near his family in Kansas City and, while raising their growing family and because she felt “I don’t consider housekeeping quite enough,” worked full-time as a bank officer.
In 1969, Anne moved to Ft. Lauderdale Florida, met and married Robert Downes, Jr. and settled in Coral Gables where she worked in leaded glass restoration and organized an Art Glass Guild for glass arts professionals. She enjoyed worldwide travel, reading, swimming, bridge, animals, and scuba diving, and delighted in watching golf and football. She later treasured social times with her Sheridan Woods neighborhood family in Melbourne, Florida.
While Anne will be remembered for her intelligence, courage, kindness, sophistication, and patriotism, her devotion to family and their education was her most important gift. Surviving children are daughters, Anne-Marie Hedge (Frank B. Flink) and Lee Hudson (Carolyn Bennett); sons, Richard P. Hudson (Lisa Judge) and Peter C. Hudson (Carrie Ellis). Her grandchildren are Karen Hudson, Steve Hudson, Sarah Hudson Norton (Zack Norton), David Hudson, Clarissa Hudson, and great grandchildren Taylor Hudson, and Iliana Nunez.
Among those who will also miss her dearly are her cats, Sam Oliver and Sam Lee.
Anne will be buried alongside her husband Robert W. Downes Jr. in the Denton Cemetery, Caroline County MD. In lieu of a memorial service, Anne’s family will celebrate her life in the Spring and encourage a donation to Helios Care of Oneonta in recognition of the care she received from the staff, especially Becka Burkart, the Schoharie Animal Shelter, or the Gilboa Historical Society.
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