Llewellyn B. Toothaker

Jan 29, 1924 - May 20, 2017

Llewellyn's Story

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Newburgh - Llewellyn B. Toothaker, 93, died shortly after suffering a stroke at Seaport Village, Ellsworth on May 20, 2017. He was the son of Charles and Delilah (nee Getchell) Toothaker and was born at home in Newburgh on the family farm on Jan. 29, 1924, one of 12 children. Llewellyn graduated from Hampden Academy in Hampden, Maine. Following graduation, he served as a Fireman, 2nd Class, in the US Navy and Coast Guard during World War II, serving in the Mediterranean theatre, the North Atlantic and the Pacific Coast. Following his discharge, he married Pauline Craven, of Hampden, Maine, to whom he was married for 63 years, settling in Bangor. During this time he continued to serve as a reservist in the Coast Guard and was subsequently called to duty to help fight the great Bar Harbor fire of 1947, where he spent two weeks. He then was hired as a firefighter for the City of Bangor, where he served for 18 years, having to retire due to an injury. He was a member of the Bangor Firemen's Relief Association.
Llewellyn had many interests and was an avid Red Sox and Boston Celtics fan. He and his wife, Polly, traveled extensively throughout the United States, visiting almost every state. For five years, they wintered in Zephyrhills, Florida, at Southern Charm RV Resort, where they were the activity directors and had many friends and pleasant memories, particularly enjoying dancing. Llewellyn was very skillful with crafts and enjoyed making baskets, which he sold at flea markets, model buildings, stained glass, and decorative painted objects. He was an avid gardener and especially enjoyed vegetable gardening. Lew loved country music, especially Hank Williams and Johnny Cash. He also had a few favorite recipes which he developed when taking his turn cooking at the firehouse for his fellow firefighters.
During his wife, Pauline's, long illness with Alzheimer's, he began to write the history of his life and his younger years. This eventually led to the self-publication of two books. The first, One of Nine, recounted his experiences growing up on a hardscrabble farm during the Depression and his years of military service during the War. The second book, The Life and Alarms of A Bangor Fireman, concerned his years as a firefighter and the hard work and perils of that job. Both books sold dozens of copies and he was delighted and surprised to receive a letter from the University of Maine at Orono, requesting copies of his books to be placed in the University library.
He was predeceased by his wife as well as his eldest daughter, Paula Toothaker, as well as nine of his siblings. He is survived by his son, Dr. John L. Toothaker and his wife, Kristina, of Newport, Maine, and Englewood, Florida; his daughter, Dr. Angela Perron and her fiancé, Todd Vafiades, of East Sullivan, Maine; his granddaughter, Kelly Toothaker Dow and her husband Benjamin Dow along with their three children, Jameson, Wesley and Sullivan; also by his step-grandson, Benjamin Woodruff of Bath, Maine. Surviving siblings are his sisters Sybil Littlefield and Marguerite Farrin.
Relatives and friends are invited to call from 11:00 a.m. until 12 noon, Tuesday, May 30, 2017 at the Hampden-Gilpatrick Chapel of Brookings-Smith, 45 Western Ave., Hampden, where funeral services will begin at 12:00 p.m. with the Rev. Clayton Blackstone, pastor of the Advent Christian Church, officiating. The family invites relatives and friends to share conversation and refreshments in the Family Reception Rooms of Brookings-Smith, 45 Western Ave., Hampden, immediately following the service. Interment will be in Locust Grove, Hampden. Those wishing to remember Llewellyn in a special way may make gifts in his memory to the Bangor Fire Department, Local 772, 289 Main Street, Bangor, Maine 04401. Condolences to the family may be expressed at BrookingsSmith.com
Published on  May 26, 2017
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