Merle Louisa Stevens Gorveatte (née Otis) passed away peacefully in her sleep on Wednesday, November 15th, 2023, at home in Brown’s Flat, NB. She was born October 19th, 1935, the daughter of Melbourne and Helen Otis of Norton, NB. Merle was pre-deceased by her parents, Melbourne and Helen Otis; her siblings Melbourne J. Otis, Stuart Otis, Lillian Otis, Donald Otis, Jock Otis, Patricia Macumber, Ronald Otis, her first husband, Rev. John (Jack) Stevens, and second husband, Dr. Kenneth Gorveatte.
Merle is survived by her children: Robert Stevens of Yarmouth, NS, Jackalyn (Dana) Smith of Hartland, NB, John (Lucy) Stevens of Beaver Harbour, NB, Allan (Sheri) Stevens of Durres, Albania, Patricia (Dr. Duane) Brown of Greenwood, IN, and Andrew (Heather) Stevens of Sussex, NB; stepchildren: Dr. Mark (Sherry) Gorveatte, Ruth (Fred) Neyman, Beth (Steven) Jones and Dr. Joel (Tracey) Gorveatte; grandchildren: Gordon Garnett, Krystyn (Philip) Davis, Katelyn (Adam) Connor, Andrew (Danielle) Smith, Alyssa (Benjamin) Wiseman, Leighanne (Tim) Hatt, John (Julie) Stevens, Melissa (Eduardo) Gonzalez, Jessica (Josh) Carrier, JD Stevens, Eric Brown, Kathryn Brown, Elizabeth (Ty) LaFleur, and Caleb Stevens; many great-grandchildren; brother, Peter (Susan) Otis; brother-in-law, Bart Macumber; sisters-in-law, Carol Otis and Linda Otis, and many nieces and nephews.
Merle spent the years 1965 to 1978 as a pastor’s wife, serving in Reformed Baptist/Wesleyan churches in Port Maitland, NS, Brazil Lake, NS, Hartland, NB, Lower Brighton, N.B. and Victoria Corner, NB. Following the death of her first husband, Rev. John (Jack) Stevens, Merle worked as secretary to the President at Bethany Bible College in Sussex, NB until her retirement.
She lived with her daughter Jackie and son-in-law Dana for many years following retirement. She often wintered in Macon, GA, staying with her son, Allan, while volunteering at Hephzibah Children’s Home, and spending her summers at Beulah Camp in Brown’s Flat, NB. In 2017, she married long-time family friend, Dr. Kenneth Gorveatte. The couple split their time between Beulah Camp, Browns Flat, in the summer, and Wesleyan Village in Brooksville, FL in the winter. From Ken's passing, in 2022, she remained at Beulah Camp.
She spent her life in service to God and to others, visiting, entertaining, and praying for her family and those in her community. She left a rich legacy of a Christian life well lived.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Sherwood’s Funeral Home (18 Scovil Road, Norton NB), where visitation will be held on Sunday, November 19, 2023, from 12:00 to 2:30 PM. The funeral service will immediately follow at 2:30 pm in the Sherwood’s Chapel. (It will be recorded then live-streamed.) The interment will take place in the Midland Cemetery. Donations can be made to the Kingswood University Rev. Jack & Merle Stevens Scholarship Fund. Condolences to the family and donations may be made through sherwoodsfuneralhome.com