March 1982

Veteran Gorham councilor Lincoln T. “Ted” Fish requested a ballot inspection after losing a bid for re-election by 81 votes. The inspection was to be held an hour before the council meeting at which the two elected council members were to be sworn in. An inspection is the first step toward a recount. “Shocked” was a common reaction to the results of Gorham’s municipal election. Many townspeople had maintained that Fish, who served on the council 12 consecutive years, would surely be re-elected. But he came in third with 643 votes, losing to incumbent Edward M. Needham and to Phillip Hill, Gorham’s ex-tax assessor. Hill took the lead with 861 votes, a margin of 137 over Needham’s 724

John and Loretta Rogan of Westbrook are the new parents of three adopted children from El Salvador. They also have three children of their own. “We wanted a large family,” Mrs. Rogan explained. At one time they had planned on five children, she said. They applied to the International Christian Adoption Agency in Waterville for one child. Then they received a call in September that three children in El Salvador need a home.

A new guest that comes in a bottle will turn up Saturday nights starting soon at Longfellow Place, Westbrook public housing project for low and moderate-income elderly. The Residents’ Council wants to sponsor a weekly Happy Hour, and James Smith, Westbrook Housing Authority executive director, has given his permission. Until now, bottles have been taboo in the meeting rooms. But the news of the Happy Hour plan provoked not a shred of protest from WHA members when it was broken to them, with one notable exception. Elsie Harmon, a tenant in Review Terrace, the first housing authority apartment house for the elderly, declared at once: “Then you better give permission to us here (in Riverview)!”

Gorham High School is presenting Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “South Pacific” in the school gym. The leads in the cast of 50 students are Shari Wiberg as Nellie Forbush, Frank Spurr as Emile deBecque, Charlotte Edwards as Bloody Mary, Bob Estes as Luther Billis, Rob Bartlett as Lt. Joe Cable, Mark Woodbury as Capt. Bracket, Mark Harriman as Commdr. Harbison, and Kim Blay as Liat. Ray Mathieu is director.

Gorham High School Principal Philip Blood told the Gorham School Committee that the teachers “as a whole” feel the minimum graduation requirements “are not demanding enough for the students and that for some students their minimums become a maximum.” Blood said that he and the faculty are requesting that students be required to take an additional year of study in three areas: math, science and social studies. Students would need19 accumulated credits in the four years.

March 1992

Jim Blais, 31, Laffin Drive, Westbrook, faces a long recovery after a hit-and-run snowmobiler ran into him as he stood on the ice of Rangeley Lake. The impact broke both his legs and sent him 30 feet or so through the air. His buddies found him unconscious and grievously injured, and until he came around, couldn’t be sure he was still alive. At home, wheelchair bound, in a lot of pain, with casts on both legs below the knee, he’ll be likely laid up for two or three months. The man who did it stopped only briefly. He left without giving his name, saying he was going to get help, but from all indications, he didn’t even do that. He has not been found.

One or more individuals pried open a safe in the Dodge Oil building on New Portland Road the night of March 10, and made off with an undetermined amount of cash, according to Sgt. Wayne Coffin of the Gorham Police Department. An employee discovered the break-in Wednesday morning, said Coffin. A window on the side of the building had been pried oven then ripped off.

New faces will be the mark of the towns elected bodies when next they convene as a result of Gorham’s municipal election. Incumbents from both the town council and school board were defeated in their bids for re-election. Three-term incumbent Carol Day was defeated in a four-way race for three seats on the council. Winners of three-year seats included incumbent Albert Mosher Jr., Norman Justice Jr. and William Wise.

A dance will be held at the Dunn Street Legion Hall in Westbrook, with proceeds to go toward the medical expenses of Richard Willoughby. Willoughby, the well-liked proprietor of the downtown bar The Bus Stop, has been hospitalized since a customer stabbed him in the neck while Willoughby was escorting him from the premises.

The display case at Warren Memorial Library, 479 Main St., Westbrook, now holds a collection of curios from “The Lake House” which was erected in 1847 as a hotel and became the home of Emily Chadbourne. “The Lake House” was located at the present site of the Portland Water District building in Standish. Items include a calendar fan, nail used in construction of the White House, an 1883 book of birch bark and many more.

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