GySgt. Clair's Story

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LEVANT - Clair F. Bemis, 79, passed away peacefully, April 7, 2016, surrounded by his loving family. Clair was born in Bangor, May 28, 1936, the son of Linwood and Halice (Smith) Bemis.

Clair attended Hermon High School. In 1953, he joined the US Marine Corps, and was deployed for one tour in Korea and two tours in Vietnam. Clair was very proud of his service with the Marines, and he retired as Gunnery Sergeant in 1973. After his service, Clair earned his Bachelor's degree in Business from Husson College. He continued to work, driving trucks for Webber Oil and Cole's, as well as giving talks on his Marine experience at Cole's Land Transportation Museum as an Ambassador. Speaking to students about his military days gave Clair the greatest pleasure.

Clair loved his time spent at camp on Lower Lead Mountain Pond, boating and being with his friends. He also enjoyed watching NASCAR. Known as "Papa" to everyone, Clair was very active with his children and grandchildren.

Clair was a character, he was easy going and never had a harsh word for anyone. He was very patient and protective of his family. Even during his last days at the nursing home, Clair's outgoing personality made him a favorite with staff and residents.

In addition to his parents, Clair was predeceased by his brother, Darrell Bemis. He is survived by his beloved wife, Rhoda (Spencer) Bemis of Levant; his children, Robert Wade Bemis and wife, Sandi of North Carolina, Jill Iverson and her companion, Anthony Andrews of Troy, and Joel Bemis and wife, Ruth of Carmel; grandchildren, Christopher, Candise and Matthew, all of North Carolina, Kyle and Cody of Carmel, and Erin of Levant; several great grandchildren; brother, Royce Bemis and wife, Liz; sister, Rosalie Booher; half-brother, Kenneth Bemis; and many nieces and nephews. The family wishes to thank the staff of Beacon Hospice and Westgate Manor for the loving care they took of Clair.

Relatives and friends are invited to call 6-8 pm, Tuesday, April 12, at Brookings-Smith, 133 Center Street, Bangor, where a memorial service will be held 11am, Wednesday, April 13, followed by conversation and refreshments at the Family Reception Center of Brookings-Smith, 163 Center Street, Bangor. Interment with military honors will be immediately following the reception at Waugh Cemetery in Levant. Those who wish to remember Clair in a special way may make gifts in his memory to Westgate Resident Council, 750 Union Street, Bangor, ME 04401 or to a charity of your choice. Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.BrookingsSmith.com.
Published on  April 9, 2016
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