Sidney Thorne

There aren’t many who understand our state’s history and culture quite like a seasoned Maine Guide. Sidney Thorne, who was the August Veteran of the Month for the Maine Veterans’ Home-Scarborough was among them. He passed away in early August.

Thorne was born and raised in Portland along with his three siblings. From an early age, he was taught a number of skills that prepared him for Maine’s rugged wilderness and beautiful but sometimes unforgiving coast, including sailing, fishing, hunting and tracking.

In 1954, at 19 years old, Thorne was drafted into the U.S. Army to serve during the Korean War. Thorne’s unique skillset developed from years in the Maine wilderness proved extremely useful for Army life. Thanks to his seafaring abilities, Thorne jumped the ranks and was placed in command of a DUKW (colloquially known as a “Duck”) as a 3rd Class Specialist. The Duck is a six-wheel-drive amphibious vehicle and was used often during World War II and the Korean War, as it was able to run on land and sea. Its primary purpose was to safely transport goods and troops over sporadic terrain, which Thorne never failed to accomplish.

Before being drafted, Thorne married his sweetheart Charlotte, the love of his life, and the two had four children together. Thorne became a Maine Guide with his primary job being to accompany those “from away” on outdoor activities such as hunting, fishing and camping. During that time he helped catch a 477-pound bluefin tuna and assisted in bagging an 800-pound moose. Being a Maine Guide was what defined Thorne’s life for many years.

filed under: