David Lester Willette, 73, of Eddington, passed away on January 9, 2018, surrounded by his loving family. David was born on May 15, 1944, in Old Town, Maine. He was predeceased by his mother, Freda (Landry/Willette) Murray and his father, Lester Willette, who bravely gave his life in WWII and was shot down over Guam in August of 1944, just months after David was born. David is survived by his loving wife, Terry (Porter) of 43 years, his son, Jason Mitchell and his wife, Stacie, of Bradley, and his daughter, Jill Mitchell also of Bradley; grandchildren, Dylan Dewley, Cameron Mitchell, Nicole MacDougall and Eva Jean MacDougall, Eva and Nicole's dad, Richard MacDougall; a loving step-father, Simon "Joe" Murray; and many beloved nieces and nephews. David was from a large close knit family of twelve brothers and sisters. Surviving siblings are Bernice Blaskey and her companion, Gary Paradis, of Flagler Beach, FL, Mary and her husband, Donnie Melanson, of Bristol, CT, Carolyn (Willette) and her husband, Reggie Barnes, of Alton, Robert and his wife, Sue Murray, of Milford, JoAnne and her husband, Vern Wyman, of Old Town, Elaine and her husband, Larry Mishou, of Old Town, Herb Murray and his partner, Colin McAlpine, of Glasgow, Scotland, Annette Paul of Eddington, Jane Cote and her partner, Carmen Foster, of Milford, Janet and her husband, John Mellor, of Northbridge, Mass. David was predeceased by his sister, Cheryl Demers in 1994.
David graduated from Old Town High School in 1962 and enlisted in the United States Navy. He served as an E-5 PH2, Photographer's Mate Petty Officer 2nd Class in the United States Navy from 1963-1967. He loved his country and there was always a flag flying at his home. Upon his return to Old Town, David began work at Gray's Hardware and continued this work for many years even after beginning his career as a firefighter. He would fondly recall stories of interactions with so many people at Gray's Hardware. David's real passion was his work as an Old Town Firefighter for 25 plus years. After retiring he still made frequent stops at "the station" and remained close with his extended firefighter family until the end. He enjoyed his retirement to the fullest, taking frequent four-wheeler trips with "the old fart's club" led by their fearless leader, Brian Wilcox. David loved his camps, both Chemo and "Camp David" in Myra. He spent countless hours in his garage/workshop in Bradley doing woodworking with a very special nephew and friend, Doug Barnes. David's world was brightened at the birth of his fourth grandchild, Eva Jean, who affectionately called him "Ada". She stole his heart and they would go on to spend many fun times together at Chemo. You would often find them riding the camp road together in Big Red.
David had an infectious, upbeat attitude and was just an incredibly special man. If you had the good fortune of being part of David's world, you were blessed. David will be missed more than words can say by his family, friends and all who knew him. If you did know David, you knew that his mantra was to always treat others as you would like to be treated and there is no doubt David lived his life that way. David was a respected mentor and role model to many.
The family wishes to express many thanks to VNA Home Health & Hospice for their wonderful care these past few months. Arrangements are being handled by Birmingham Funeral Home in Old Town. In lieu of flowers, you may donate in David's name to the Old Town Firemen's Relief Association, 59 Dartmouth St., Old Town, ME 04468 or dropping off donation to the station, The Old Town Animal Orphanage, PO Box 565, Orono, ME 04473 or www.animal-orphanage.com or VNA Home Health & Hospice, c/o EMHS Foundation, PO Box 931, Bangor, ME 04401 www.emhsfoundation.org.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, January 20, 2018, from 2-6 p.m. at the Old Town Knights of Columbus Hall. There will be a ceremony by the Old Town Fire Department beginning promptly at 2 p.m.
A spring interment will be at the Eddy Cemetery in Eddington.
Published on January 13, 2018