The Leeman brothers from the Civil War; Joe Morse, who served in France during World War I; and the Carr brothers of World War II and Korea were a few of the topics during “Abbot Patriots,” a presentation last week at the Abbot Historical Society. It was also a treat to have Reggie Ronco, a WWII veteran of the South Pacific who entered the service from Sangerville, in attendance.
We couldn’t have had a better leader for the evening than Carolyn Brown Amos, military wife and mother, AHS president and relative of several town veterans. It was a wonderful program to hold just before the Fourth of July.
In particular, I was touched by her presentation on Edward Lewis Page, who was a tail-gunner for the 8th Air Force, 615th Bomb Squadron based in Deenethorpe, Northamptonshire, England. He died from wounds when the B-17 “Mary Alice” was hit on July 13, 1944, and was awarded the Purple Heart, Air Medal, Silver Star and Citation of Honor. He was a good friend of my dad, Gayland Moore Jr., a Navy veteran who always remembered Page when he marched in Memorial Day parades.
That might have been all I knew of Lewis Page, except for the letters Amos read about this Abbot patriot. One of the letters was written by Page’s lieutenant to his mother, Rebecca Page, assuring her what a fine young man he was, and that his end had come quickly and without suffering.
It was such a privilege to hear that letter, and then the grateful response Mrs. Page wrote back to him. In answering the lieutenant as to whether there might be anything he or his men could do for her, she asked only one thing — that when circumstances permitted, they would visit his grave in England for her.
Also a veteran of World War II was Clifton Carr Jr. He survived that war, but was killed in Korea when the Jeep he was driving hit a mine. Despite what were obviously serious injuries, Carr told the medics to treat three other members of his crew, not him.
My favorite source for info on Abbot veterans is “A Centeseptquinary History of Abbot, Maine 1927-2002” by Wayne Bennett, Donna Runnels, Kaye Roberts Sakahara, Alice Hescock Weymouth and many others. Bennett did a lot of work on veterans information.
Clifton Carr Jr.’s name is one of 245 engraved on the Maine Korean War Memorial in Mount Hope Cemetery in Bangor. It is a beautiful pastoral spot.
Both Carr and Edward Lewis Page are listed on the World War II Memorial website at www.wwiimemorial.com. WWII veterans, whether deceased or still living, may be honored on the website by submitting info and a photo, if you wish.
In Abbot, the Honor Roll Committee is awaiting delivery of a new granite honor roll, which is due to be dedicated on Veterans Day.
The committee is seeking contributions to help with expenses such as landscaping, a maintenance fund and adding future names to the honor roll, and has $8,000 left to raise.
The local quilting group has made a stunning quilt to raffle, with the winning name to be drawn on Constitution Day, Sept. 17. Tickets are $1, or six for $5, and may be obtained at the Town Office or from committee members.
Contributions of $25 (or more) are welcome in honor of, or in memory of, a veteran. Gifts will be acknowledged in a brochure to be printed. Send checks with your name, name of veteran to be honored and war era to Town of Abbot, PO Box 120, Abbot 04406.
The area Fourth of July Parade will begin at 11 a.m. today at the corner of Wilson Street and Acme Road in Brewer. The route will be down Wilson Street, across the Chamberlain Bridge, right onto Main Street in Bangor, up State Street and right onto Exchange Street. There will be veterans riding in Cyr buses as well as marching in the parade.
The first Husson Family Reunion will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, July 16, at the Campus Center at Husson University, One College Circle, Bangor. Participants are asked to bring a lunch.
Patsy L. Husson of Hampden, whose husband Jim is a grandson of the late Chesley Hayward Husson Sr., points out that Husson, a native of Lynn, Mass., founded Husson College in 1933. He mortgaged his home and purchased the school previously known as the Bangor Maine School of Commerce.
Husson family members will be attending the reunion from all over the country. The program will include a slide show of Hant’s Harbour, Newfoundland, where Chesley Husson’s parents were from. His father, George Edwin Parsons Husson, Sr., arrived in Boston between 1897 and 1902, according to what he told census takers.
Patsy Husson started out with two pages of information on the Husson family and now is in the process of writing a book, a project that will surely be of interest to the community as well as the Husson family.
At the Union Historical Society’s Old Town House on Town House Road at 7:30 p.m. on July 6, author James H. Ellis will talk about the War of 1812, also known as the Second War of Independence, using material from his 2009 book “A Ruinous and Unhappy War: New England and the War of 1812.”
The meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 6. Drawing from period sources such as diaries, journals, logs, letters, government documents and newspapers, Ellis, a resident of West Barnstable, Mass., presents tales of ordinary New Englanders caught up in an unwanted conflict.
Refreshments will be served. The meeting is free and open to all. Union Historical Society owns and maintains the Robbins House on Union Common, the Cobb’s Ledge historic site on Town House Road, and the Old Town House, which is available to rent for functions. Membership is $5 a year. For information, leave a message at 785-5444 or visit www.midcoast.com/comespring.
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