MEXICO – Dan DeRaspe, a genuine force of nature, completed his many missions and suddenly left this physical plane on March 19, 2020, following a heart attack at age 73. Father. Grandfather. Brother. Uncle. Educator. Master Sergeant. Entrepreneur. Leader. Protector. Guardian. Artist. Chef. Woodcutter. Outdoorsman. Sportsman. Motorcyclist. Collector. Prankster. Storyteller. Friend. His indomitable spirit and undeniable life force, now free of pain and struggle, has begun its next tour, helping supervise Heaven and protect us all in these unprecedented times.

Albert Daniel DeRaspe

Albert Daniel DeRaspe

Dan was born to a large family; the first son of Albert J. and Beatrice “HoneyBea” (Pocius) DeRaspe’s nine children, in Mexico, Maine. His childhood was infused with the spirit of family, faith, hard-work, street smarts, and service, which informed his entire life. He graduated Mexico High School, going on to obtain his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Maine Farmington.

The first in his family to attend college, he possessed strong intelligence and curiosity, along with a passion for reading and life-long learning. Dan was a unique, non-conforming educator, foundationally impacting thousands of young students’ lives over his three decades at Mt. Blue Junior High School in Farmington. His huge classroom was a work of art, visually representing his love for American history and creatively engaging his pupils. Many remember him as their favorite teacher, sharing hilarious stories of his “antics”.

Concurrent with his teaching career, Dan honorably served his country in the U.S. Army (1969-2006), retiring as Master Sergeant (E8). One of his proudest accomplishments was besting men half his age in competitive soldiering at Jericho, Vermont’s Outdoor Winter Survival School, earning the coveted French Axe Award in his 40’s. His took great joy in leading and developing members of the Maine National Guard Mountain Company and at Bog Brook. Dan sought to prepare his family, students and soldiers for life, instilling lessons in perseverance, honor and integrity. A true original, he followed his own rules, to the bemusement of many.

Dan was strikingly handsome, charismatic, and a force in any room. His sphere of influence was larger than most, marked by his unique forms of deep love and fierce loyalty. He was very active in civic organizations, including the Lion’s Club, Knights of Columbus, and Elks Club. He was physically powerful and forever a man-in-motion. He relished the outdoors… building a family camp at Garland Pond with Ann, his former wife of 32 years, and mother of his children. He could often be found on his motorcycle, catamaran, boat, snowmobile or four-wheeler, exploring the world around him, stirring up trouble or finding peace. He knew his demons, came by them honestly, and always strived to overcome them and be his best self: “Drive On…” was his motto and he did.

A spiritual man, he sought the invisible people and those in need; the hurting and alone, the hungry and scared, the widows and lost amongst us, and provided for them physically, emotionally, financially and spiritually. On nine occasions, life placed Dan as the only person between the death and life of a stranger; each time he answered the call, literally saving their lives. True story. As he reflected on his life recently, he took comfort in these parts of his journey. He recognized that his life had had deep purpose and meaning, even when it didn’t always make sense to him and he wished he’d been able to show his love differently to those closest to him. Dan was the original “Prepper,” fully prepared for any eventuality, the man you wanted beside you when things got real. Please stay with us now, Dad.

He is survived by his beloved and special grandson, Joshua DeRaspe (29), who meant the world to him and who showed up for Grandpa Dan, always and daily. He took great joy in his great-granddaughters, Audrey (4) and Claira (2) and Joshua’s wife Kaitlyn, all of New Sharon. He leaves a large hole in the heart of his son, Michael Daniel DeRaspe, his wife Amanda and their son John (6) of Scarborough and his daughter, Kathy DeRaspe Baltes, her children Ellie (19), Meg (17) and Matthew (12) Baltes of Portland, and her partner Alexander McCann, of Cape Elizabeth. The Buotte family (Jackie and her tribe) are similarly heartbroken at the loss of their “Danny.” His deep friendship and love for Ann (Bohnson DeRaspe) Yorks, of Farmington, was steady for 54 years.

He was predeceased by his young brother, Mathew, and a late-in-life love, Colonel Diana Demers, of Yarmouth. He cared deeply for her daughters, Brigitte Knight and Heather Lonegan. He also held a special place in his heart for Chris Cook Leeman, Betsy Cook Norton, Bob Yorks, Aaron Baltes, Nancy Pinkham Riggs, Jim Young, Dave Bushie, and Teddy Tanguay. Also surviving are his many friends and cribbage buddies, members of the Bohnson clan, and his extended tribe of DeRaspes, including siblings, Andrew (Carmel), Tommy (Topsham), Karen Gallant (Mexico), Agatha Martineau (Mexico), Marie (Poland), Jackie Buotte (Lamoine), Jen (Denmark); and herds of nieces, nephews and cousins.

Due to pandemic circumstances, a full military funeral and interment at Augusta Veteran’s Cemetery will be announced in the future.

Arrangements are under the care of Wiles Remembrance Center; Adams-McFarlane Chapel 137 Farmington Falls Rd., Farmington. A kind word may be left in his book of memories at