BREWER – Paul E. Gervais, 64, former owner/manager of Paul’s Restaurant and Speakeasy, entered a higher plane of existence April 30, 2007, surrounded by his family, at his home after a strong battle with cancer. He was born March 26, 1943, in Caswell, the son of George and Olympe (Rioux) Gervais. He was raised in Caswell and graduated from Limestone High School in 1961 and from Husson College in 1970. While at Husson, Paul began working at Cole’s Express, as a bookkeeper. When Cole’s Express built the 95er Restaurant and Service Center on Hogan Road, Paul became assistant manager. In 1965, he became manager and remained in that position for 10 years, until 1975 when he bought the business and renamed it Paul’s. Paul’s Restaurant and Speakeasy stood on Hogan Road for 29 years. Paul received some important distinctions throughout the years, including Husson College’s Businessman of the Year in 1991, Maine Restaurant Association president from 1982 to 1983, and president of the local chapter of the Jaycees from 1972 to 1773. In 1975, Dick Stolkner presented Paul with his JCI Senatorship, and in 1981 Paul was elected to the board of directors of the Maine Publicity Bureau, Augusta. He also operated Jordan’s Restaurant, Searsport, with Bob Gilberti and the Admiral’s Ocean Inn, Belfast, with Roy Dakin. Paul was best known, though, from his 29 years at Paul’s Restaurant and Speakeasy. Paul met many people through the restaurant, employees and patrons alike. It was more than just a restaurant, though; it was a way of life for people all throughout the Bangor area. This is where his life’s work was done, but his legacy lives through the relationships he developed with so many people through Paul’s Restaurant, and his various other endeavors. In 2001 Paul had a restaurant constructed in Old Town on the Penobscot River. Today, his wife and two of his sons, Paul Jr. and Alexander, carry on the family tradition, running the restaurant known as City Park Grille. Starting in the mid-1990s, Paul became afflicted with sarcoid myopathy, a rare muscle disease, ultimately forcing him to retire and to sell Paul’s Restaurant in 2004. Paul worked in the restaurant business for nearly 40 years, it was his life and he loved it. He felt that it was the path God had chosen for him. He was extremely successful and satisfied with his life. He will always be remembered as a man with a brilliant mind and a strong constitution. Paul was married to Martha Kennett Gervais for 22 wonderful years. He has five children, three from a previous marriage, Babette, George and Allison, and two from his current marriage, Paul Jr. and Alexander. He was predeceased by his father, mother; and sister, Georgia. He is survived by brother, John and wife, Carmen, of Ohio; brother, Rainald and wife, Sandra, of Limestone; and sister, Ada of Ohio. He’s also survived by his five children, Babette Cichanowicz and husband, Michael and children, Nicholas and Bennett, of Ohio, George Gervais and wife, Julene and children, Taylor and Jack, of Hampden, Allison Sofnas and husband, Jay and children, Madeline and Tyler, of California; sons, Paul Jr. and Alex Gervais; and loving wife, Martha Kennett Gervais. Friends are invited to call 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, May 2, at Brookings-Smith, Clark-Piper Chapel, 55 South Main St., Brewer. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated 2 p.m. Thursday, May 3, at St. John’s Catholic Church, 207 York St., Bangor. Interment will be at Fairview Cemetery, Veazie. The family invites relatives and friends to share conversation and refreshments 4 p.m. Thursday, May 3, at Riverside Park Grille, 301 North Main St., Old Town. Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.BrookingsSmith.com
Posted Sept. 25, 2008, at 11:15 p.m.