FORT FAIRFIELD – Vinal L. Fleming, 73, beloved husband of Shirley L. (Grass) Fleming, passed away Friday morning, Jan. 25, 2013, at his residence, after an extended illness. He was born Feb. 3, 1939, in Oxbow, the son of Clair V. and Mildred M. (Gagnon) Fleming.
Vinal attended schools in Winterville, Patten and Ashland, and furthered his education at Unity College, where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in business management. He was married to Shirley L. Grass March 25, 1958, and proudly served his country as a 20-year veteran of the U.S. Air Force from 1956 to 1976, attaining the rank of master sergeant, and during his military career was stationed in Germany, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Westover, Mass.; Loring Air Force Base, Limestone; and attended electrical engineering school at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, and also in Biloxi, Miss. After his honorable discharge from the Air Force, Vinal was employed as an electrical technician for Dan’s Living Center, Caribou; and Maine Potato Growers, Presque Isle. Vinal was known far and wide for being a “go to guy,” and was “Mr. Fixit” to his family. His expertise in auto, electrical and carpentry to name a few came in handy to Vinal’s family and friends who needed his assistance. His famous response, “Not a problem,” will be fondly remembered by all who knew him. Vinal was also an avid outdoorsman who extensively traveled in the Maine woods, and his favorite places included Scraggly Lake and the Oxbow Cut. His wit and quick smile will be missed by all whose lives he touched.
In addition to his parents, Mr. Fleming was predeceased by two sisters, Joan Lafland and Madeline Martin. He is survived by his wife of nearly 55 years, Shirley of Fort Fairfield; two sons and daughters-in-law, Theodore “Ted” and Lori Fleming of Lenore City, Tenn., and David and Sheri Fleming of Fort Fairfield; one daughter and son-in-law, Lisa and Dale Keegan of Fort Fairfield; two brothers and sisters-in-law, Carroll and Bertha Fleming of Lakeland, Fla., and Darrell and Lydia Fleming of Burlington, Conn.; one sister, Edna Frost and her husband, Roger, of Prarie du Chien, Wis.; nine grandchildren, Shannon Jalbert, David and Heather Fleming, Tyler, Scott and Keiza Bernaiche, Darby Keegan, Melissa Cronin and Summer Grass; six great-grandchildren, Hilary Ann Jalbert, Brandon Jalbert, Jacqueline, Kelsea and David Fleming, and Lainey Rochford; numerous nieces and nephews.
A service to celebrate Vinal’s life will be conducted 11 a.m Saturday, Feb. 16, at Calvary Baptist Church, Access Highway, Caribou, with Pastor Joshua Presley officiating. Interment with military honors will take place later in the spring at Masardis Cemetery. A time of continued fellowship will be held after the service at the church. Those who wish may contribute in memory of Mr. Fleming to the Maine Down Syndrome Network, 141 Rabbit Farm Road, Warren, ME 04864. Arrangements have been entrusted to Giberson-Dorsey Funeral Home, 144 Main St., Fort Fairfield.