BUXTON – C. Murray Eaton, who beat cancer twice and lived to become Buxton’s oldest resident, died Sunday at his home. He was 102.

Mr. Eaton lived in Buxton his whole life, and was recognized with the Boston Post Cane in 2008 as the town’s oldest resident.

He outlived everyone he grew up with in Buxton. He lived longer than his two siblings and most family members of his generation. He outlived his hunting and fishing friends and the men he served with as volunteers for the Hollis Fire Department.

One of his toughest losses came on Sept. 1, 2011, when Mildred Eaton, his wife of 72 years, died of diabetes complications.

Though Mr. Eaton lost many friends and loved ones in his life, he was never alone. He was the father of five children, had a passion for the outdoors and lived life to its fullest.

“He lived in the moment,” said his daughter Myrna Finney of Freeport.

Mr. Eaton was remembered by his daughters Tuesday as a dedicated family man who worked hard to provide a good life for his family.

He worked as a dispatcher for Central Maine Power Co. for 45 years. In his early years, he fixed cars to earn extra money. He also was a master plumber and an electrician, and repaired TVs and radios in his spare time.

Mr. Eaton retired from CMP in 1975 after he was diagnosed with cancer. Doctors gave him six months to live. He beat cancer twice.

His family said he had a strong will to live.

“Daddy was very involved with mom and the five of us,” Finney said. “We did a lot of things together as a family. … He was a man of routine. He was an old-fashioned family man.”

Another daughter, Gail Eaton of Buxton, said he was a good father who was always there for his family and friends.

“All you had to do was ask and he was there, no matter what you needed,” Eaton said. “He was kind and loving and constantly teaching us by doing. It was not, ‘Do as I say.’ He lived what he taught us.”

Mr. Eaton was an outdoor enthusiast who raised minks and rabbits as a young man and hunted and fished in northern Maine his whole life.

Mr. Eaton was a volunteer firefighter in Hollis and Buxton for 30 to 40 years. He was active in the community until about a year ago, when his daughters say he started to slow down.

Last week, he beat his grandson at a game of cribbage.

“It’s amazing to get that old and still be able to beat his grandson at cribbage,” Finney said. “That, in itself, was unbelievable to us.”

On Saturday, Mr. Eaton puttered around his house. On Sunday morning, he was unresponsive.

“I’m sad he’s gone, but I’m happy for him,” Gail Eaton said. “He didn’t suffer.”

 

Melanie Creamer can be contacted at 791-6361 or at:

mcreamer@pressherald.com