BREWER – Leo G. Parla, 79, passed away peacefully Nov. 19, 2012, at a Bangor health care facility. He was born Sept. 7, 1933, in Boston, the son of Carmello Parla and Marion (Warner) Parla.
Although he was beset by challenges, having poor eye sight from birth and losing his mother at age 9, he took life head-on. Leo became a commercial fisherman and cook, built boats, re-opened a longtime unused fishing ground on Long Island Sound for catching lobster, and even became a boat captain. Always willing to try new things, he bought a farm in Downeast Maine, where he raised Scottish Highland cattle and blueberries. Leo was a master wood mechanic and owned small wood floor companies on Long Island, Rhode Island and Maine for 49 years. But he will be most remembered for his big heart and generosity. Before people asked for help, he was already there. Many years ago when working on a small wood floor job for a sister, who unselfishly took care of her ailing brother, he never returned for payment of the job.
Leo is survived by his loving wife of 22 years, Reba (Epstein) Parla; children; Francesca (Parla) Miller and husband, Michael Miller, Theron Parla, Leonard Parla and Alethea (Parla) Hempfling and husband, Gary Hempfling; stepmother, Ruth Parla; siblings, Ralph Parla and wife, Mary Parla, Patty Parla and Robert Parla; and grandchildren, Matthew, Geoffrey, Ashley, Robert and Natalie. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by daughter, Vanessa Parla; mother of his children, Gloria Parla; and siblings, Carol, Stephen and Charles.
Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 21, at Jewish Funeral Chapel, 118 Center St., Bangor. Interment will be at Beth Israel Cemetery, Bangor. Donations in his memory may be sent to Congregation Beth Israel, 144 York St., Bangor, ME 04401. A service of Brookings-Smith, Bangor.