Donald Alexander, a longtime bridge assistant for the Maine Department of Transportation who dedicated nearly his whole life to serving the town of Raymond, died Monday after a brief illness. Wednesday would have been his 74th birthday.

Mr. Alexander was a volunteer firefighter and EMT for the Raymond Fire and Rescue Department for more than 50 years. He served as captain of the department and was a charter member of its rescue service, which began in the 1970s.

“He was one of the dependable ones,” said Cathy Gosselin, deputy chief of the Raymond Fire and Rescue Department. “You could always count on him. He dedicated a lot of time to the department.”

Mr. Alexander’s wife, Linda, was a longtime EMT for Raymond. His son, Timothy Alexander, doubled as a dispatcher and EMT. And his daughter, Donalyn Welch, is a former ambulance attendant and firefighter for the town.

His wife said Tuesday that he enjoyed his years with the department.

“He liked to help protect the health and safety of the residents,” she said.

In addition to his work as a firefighter and EMT, Mr. Alexander served as director of the town’s emergency management agency. He also served as an animal control officer for many years.

Last week, town and public safety officials gathered at Mr. Alexander’s home in Raymond to present a plaque to him that recognizes his years of service to the town.

“He was really appreciative,” his wife said. “He had that little twinkle in his eye that he got when he was pleased. He grinned from ear to ear.”

Mr. Alexander worked for the Maine Department of Transportation for 50 years. He was assigned to MDOT’s bridge division in Scarborough, where he worked closely with supervisors and ran parts to bridge operators across the region. He retired as a bridge assistant, but was called back to work part time as an operator for the Naples Bay Bridge. He retired again in 2011.

“He loved his work,” said Amy Webster, a personnel assistant for MDOT. “I think he loved working with the people. He was definitely a social butterfly. He liked to be busy. They had him going here, there and everywhere.”

Outside work, Mr. Alexander was a loving husband and dedicated father who enjoyed being with family.

On Tuesday, his wife laughed as she reminisced about the day they met.

The story begins with a reading from a fortune teller, who predicted she would meet her future husband in a place with a lot of windows. The couple met at the Prides Corner Drive-In, where he worked as a groundsman.

They raised two children. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Jan. 4.

His wife said he was the kind of father their children could go to for advice or support.

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

[email protected]