KINGFIELD - Charles "Chuck" Arthur Bessey, 76, died Tuesday, May 5, 2015, at home, in the loving arms of his family. He was born on October 18, 1938, in Willimantic, ME, the fourth child of Arthur E. And Thelma I. (Davis) Bessey.
He attended Monson schools and at the age of 12 got hired "sticking" lumber in a sawmill during summer vacation and later became a "cookee" in his father's lumber camps. At the age of 19, he hired on with the U.S, Geological Survey, where he mapped parts of the eastern U.S. He then came back to the Monson area and went to work as a plumber's apprentice. Chuck married Josephine Dolley on October 1, 1960, and they settled in Monson until an unplanned brush with the Maine Warden Service changed his life forever. His mentor, Warden Irwin "Mac" McAllister saw promise in Chuck and asked him if he would like to be a temporary warden with him the next fall, and if he liked it, then try out for the Warden Service. He decided it would provide security for his growing family, so when he hired on in 1962, he took his wife and their infant daughter, Christine, to the Danforth District in Washington County. Five years and three children later, Chuck and Jo decided to bid on the Kingfield district, and were fortunately sent to live there, and have remained there ever since. For the next 15 years, Chuck was the Game Warden in Kingfield and met many wonderful people and had many adventures. After retiring from the Warden Service in 1982, Chuck got his broker's license and opened Narrow Gauge Realty, and Jo went to work for him. For the next 29 years, they listed and sold real estate and again, met so many wonderful people and made lifelong friendships. Chuck also contributed to the town of Kingfield through serving on many boards and committees. He was a proud member of the Ancient and Free Accepted Masons, Baskahegan Lodge # 175 of Danforth. They retired from the business in 2011 and Chuck concentrated on his vegetable gardens, growing and giving away many veggies. Jo jokes that when people saw Chuck coming to their door with an armload of zucchini and summer squash, they pulled the curtains and pretended not to be home! In his younger years, Chuck was an avid bobcat hunter with his buddies, Ash Peasley and Ralph McLaughlin, and enjoyed hunting woodcock with his best friend, Jay Staton. Chuck raised champion English Coonhounds and Brittany Spaniels, as well as livestock and the occasional injured or orphaned wild animal.
Chuck is survived by his wife of 54 years, Jo; his four children, Christine Anzalone and husband, Chris, of Levant, Karen Pease and husband, Steven, of Lexington Township, Thomas Bessey and former daughter in-law, Tracy Bessey, of Kingfield and Peg Lane of Scarborough; his nine grandchildren, Guy Atwood, twins, Cassandra Munson and Elizabeth Bronfman, Rick and Samantha Bessey, Josie and Elias Pease, and Joseph and Andy Lane; his sisters, Marilyn Buchanan and husband, Jim, and Charyl "Prudy" Turner and husband, Fred; his brother, Dick Bessey and wife, Mary Ann, all of Willimantic; many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents; and his brother, George.
Visitation will be held on Saturday, May 9, 2015, from 12-2 p.m. with funeral services to begin at 2 p.m. at the United Methodist Church, 51 High St., Kingfield, with Pastor Constance Maginnis and the Rev. Richard Waddell officiating. Mt. Abram Masonic Lodge #204 of Kingfield will conduct Masonic Services. A reception will held at the church following the services. Donations in Chuck's memory may be made to the Ronald McDonald House, 250 Brackett St., Portland, ME 04102 or Androscoggin Home Health and Hospice Care, 15 Strawberry Ave., Lewiston, ME 04240. Arrangements are under the care and direction of Dan & Scott's Cremation & Funeral Service, 488 Farmington Falls Rd., Farmington, ME 04938.