PENOBSCOT – James Almon McMahan died peacefully Aug. 1, 2013, at the Veterans home. Jim was born April 1, 1925, in Castine, to Dorothy (Leach) McMahan and James McMahan.
He spent his early years in Castine and when he was 7, the family moved to Belfast. Jim attended the Belfast schools and graduated from Crosby High School in 1943. He enlisted in the Army Air Corps and served as an aerial gunner from 1943 to 1945, flying 34 missions over Germany and surviving three emergency landings. After his discharge he attended the University of Maine and graduated in 1949. In 1947, Jim married Dorothy Stone of Belfast. They were married for nearly 66 years and had four children. Jim worked as an office manager and a retail store manager, and in the 1960s began a career as a social studies teacher and school librarian. He taught at Knox Stream School; Central High, Corinth; and Searsport High until his retirement in 1990. Jim and Dot lived and raised their family in Belfast, Corinth, Kenduskeag and Searsport, before realizing a long-held dream of building a house in West Penobscot on land that had been part of Jim’s grandfather’s and uncle’s farms where Jim had spent much of his youth. Jim and Dot and their children enjoyed years of camping trips to Baxter State Park, travel camping across the U.S. and the Canadian Maritimes, and spending time at a tiny camp on the land in West Penobscot then owned by Jim’s mother. A treasured memory of the extended family is “Snowbird Weekend,” celebrated annually for 17 years at Camp Mechuwana, Winthrop.
Jim is survived by his wife, Dorothy; their four children and their spouses, Jeanne of South Strafford, Vt., Andrew and Irene (Schleicher) of Waterville, Daniel and Betteanne (Lavoie) of Millis, Mass., and Ossipee, N.H., and Charles “Chuck” and Rebecca (Faust) of Newburgh; seven grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.
A celebration of Jim’s life will be held 1 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9, at Penobscot United Methodist Church where a gathering of friends and family afterwards in the fellowship hall. In lieu of flowers, the family requests gifts to Friendship Cottage in Blue Hill, P.O. Box 299, Ellsworth, ME 04605; or Penobscot United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 30, Penobscot, ME 04476. Arrangements under the direction of Mitchell-Tweedie Funeral Home, Bucksport.