February 26, 2010

Artist, pioneering captain among noted deathsNoted Mainers died in '09

By GLENN ADAMS Associated Press Writer

— By GLENN ADAMS

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Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer... Shiloh Pepin tries to squirt her father with saline solution out of a syringe while attending a doctor's appointment in Portland on Tuesday, December 11, 2007.

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Judge Frank Coffin? (No caption information provided by photographer.)

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The Associated Press

AUGUSTA — Jurist-politician Frank Coffin, chain store founder Robert Reny and former Milwaukee Braves pitcher Carlton Willey are among the well-known and accomplished Mainers who died in 2009.

The list of Maine natives, those who made homes in Maine or achieved fame in the state, also includes artist Andrew Wyeth. It was in Maine that part-time resident Wyeth found the subject for ''Christina's World,'' his best-known painting. He died in his sleep at his Philadelphia-area home Jan. 16 at age 91.

The following is a list of others with close Maine ties who died during 2009:

n Ethel ''Billie'' Gammon, founder of the Washburn-Norlands Living History Center in Livermore, died Jan. 11 at age 92. Gammon helped to make Norlands a place where visitors could experience life as it was in rural Maine during the 18th and 19th centuries.

n Paul Schipper, an avid skier who obsessively hit the slopes at Sugarloaf ski resort in Carrabassett Valley every day of the season for 24 years, died Feb. 16 in Bangor at 85. Between 1980 and January 2005, Schipper skied 3,903 consecutive days at the mountain.

n Rumford-born Chet Bulger, a top lineman on the last Cardinals team to win the NFL championship, died Feb. 19 at 91 in Virginia. Bulger played in the NFL from 1942 to 1950, starting with the Chicago Cardinals and spending his final season with the Detroit Lions.

n Arthur Stilphen of Belgrade, who served as commissioner of public safety during Gov. Joseph Brennan's administration, died Feb. 21 at age 66.

n Harrison Richardson, a Portland trial lawyer, ex-legislator and 1974 candidate for governor who played a key role in the enactment of both the state income tax and landmark environmental legislation, died Feb. 26. He was 79.

n Molly K. Carney, who as Molly Kool was the first woman in North America to become a licensed ship captain, died Feb. 25 at her home in Bangor at age 93. Known in Canada by her maiden name, Molly Kool won her captain's papers in 1939 and sailed the North Atlantic between Alma, New Brunswick, and Boston.

n Claude Brinegar, who led an overhaul of the railroad industry and saw the nation through the oil crisis of 1973 as the third U.S. transportation secretary, died March 13 at age 82 at Palo Alto, Calif. He was a part-time resident of Boothbay Harbor.

n Frances ''Fran'' Ruggles, 67, one of the parishioners who drank arsenic-tainted coffee at a church in New Sweden in 2003, died after battling health problems related to the poisoning. Ruggles died at her home in the northern Maine town April 4.

n James Hoffman, a former publisher of newspapers in West Virginia and Augusta, died June 3 at 83.

n Jane Weinberger, widow of Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger and a writer and publisher of children's stories, died at a nursing care facility in Bar Harbor at 91 on July 12.

n Carlton Willey of Cherryfield, whose eight-year Major League career included a World Series appearance for the Milwaukee Braves in 1958, died July 20 of complications from lung cancer. Willey, 78, retired to his Down East hometown after his major league career from 1958 to 1965.

n Robert H. Reny Sr. of Damariscotta, who built a retail clothing business into a 14-store chain and Maine fixture, died July 24 at 83. Fortune Magazine praised Reny in 2004 for his placement of stores in Maine's downtowns, saying it positioned the chain for competition against giant national retailers.

n Ron Brown, who coached basketball at Maine high schools for more than 30 years, died Aug. 4 of complications from kidney failure. Brown, who was 58, also coached the now-defunct Maine Lumberjacks, a professional team in the Continental Basketball Association.

n Erich Kunzel, an award-winning conductor who headed the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra since it was founded three decades ago and who won international fame through sales of more than 10 million recordings, died of cancer Sept. 1 at a hospital near his home in Swan's Island at age 74. Kunzel also had homes in Kentucky and Florida.

n Robert Woodbury of Falmouth, chancellor of the University of Maine System from 1986 to 1993, died Sept. 12 at the age of 71 of lymphoma.

n Shiloh Pepin of Kennebunkport, a girl who was born with fused legs, a rare condition often called ''mermaid syndrome,'' and gained a wide following on the Internet and national television, died Oct. 23 in Portland. She was 10. Doctors had predicted she would survive only for days after her birth, at the most.

n Ival ''Bud'' Cianchette of Cumberland, a founding brother of one of Maine's largest construction firms, Cianbro Corp., died Nov. 5. Cianchette, who was 83, was also active in politics and was the father of Peter Cian-chette, who ran for governor in 2002.

n Lewis Millett, a Mechanic Falls native who won the Medal of Honor in 1951 for leading a bayonet charge against an enemy position during the Korean War, died Nov. 14 in Loma Linda, Calif. Millett also fought in World War II and served in Vietnam.

n Richard L. Hatch of Topsham, a philanthropist who quietly helped preserve thousands of acres of land and gave away millions of dollars, died at age 91 Nov. 18.

n Frank M. Coffin, who helped launch a revival of the Democratic Party in Maine in the 1950s with Edmund Muskie, served two terms in Congress and went on to serve four decades on the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, died Dec. 7. He was 90.

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Additional Photos

Andrew Wyeth
click image to enlarge

Andrew Wyeth

AP

click image to enlarge

Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer... Shiloh Pepin tries to squirt her father with saline solution out of a syringe while attending a doctor's appointment in Portland on Tuesday, December 11, 2007.

click image to enlarge

Judge Frank Coffin? (No caption information provided by photographer.)

Andrew Wyeth
click image to enlarge

Andrew Wyeth

AP

  


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