Edwin H. Pert, 83, Noted Maine Public Servant, passed away peacefully on Friday, Oct. 14, 2016, at Maine Medical Center. He was born in Bath, Maine, in 1933, to Perleston L. Pert Sr. and Katherine M. Pert, and kept Bath in his heart every day.
Graduating from Morse High School in 1950, he caught the political bug and went on to study Government at the University of Maine in Orono. After receiving his BA from UMaine in 1954, he became an energetic and respected leader of the Democratic Party in Maine for the remainder of his life.
Ed served for one tour in Korea as a Public Information Officer for the U.S. Army, and worked in Bath as a reporter for the Bath Daily Times and as News Director for WMMS/WJTO Radio upon his return home. Always drawn to politics, he won the Bath seat in the House of Representatives in Maine's 99th Legislature in addition to serving as Executive Director of the Maine Democratic Party. After a failed attempt at the senate seat for Bath in 1960, he spent several years as Executive Director of the Maine Chapters of the March of Dimes and Arthritis Foundation, as well as Secretary of the Maine Senate from 1965-1966. During this time, he also built his first home near Reid State Park in Georgetown, a community that he remained an integral part of for the rest of his life.
In 1974, Ed was elected as the Clerk of the Maine House of Representatives, a post in which he excelled for 18 years, coordinating the enormous volume of material involved with lawmaking and guiding new representatives through the process. Many of these citizen lawmakers continue to remember him with gratitude and affection for his mentorship. Also during this time he spent a term as the President of the National Professional Society of the Clerks of the House, served as a Georgetown Selectman, sat on several civic boards, and built a new home in the Robinhood section of Georgetown. As a Notary Public Ed also performed several marriages.
He retired from the legislature in 1992, leaving the office of clerk with integrity and efficiency. Unity College honored his years of public service with an Honorary Doctorate in 1993, the Maine Women's Lobby bestowed upon him the Integrity-Leadership-Vision Award in 1988, and Georgetown named him Citizen of the Year in 2003.
For the last two decades, Ed could be seen around Georgetown and Bath nearly every day communing with friends, mentoring younger folks, and spreading good cheer. He relished meeting new people and would extend his hand with a cheerful "Hi, I'm Ed Pert!" His love of travel never diminished, enjoying trips ranging from Downeast Maine to Florida to extended trips to Northern Europe, particularly Scandinavia. He loved circuses, gourmet food, wine, the ocean and the visual and performing arts. He was forever and always an ambassador for Maine, the Democratic Party, Georgetown and his beloved hometown of Bath.
Ed was predeceased by his parents; a sister, Eunice (Pert) Dow of Wiscasset; a brother Perleston L. "Bub" Pert Jr. of Topsham; and a nephew the noted Maine cartoonist, Jeff Pert. He is survived by his sisters, Jacqueline (Pert) Fossett of Cumberland Center and Catherine (Pert) Biette of Topsham; his sister-in law, Jacqueline Pert of Topsham; and several nieces and nephews and their families: Jon Pert of Falmouth, Jennifer Pert Russo of New Gloucester, Judy Pert of Roslindale, MA, Bruce Biette of Portland, Julie Skelton of Topsham, Doreen Corum of Randolph, James Dow of York, PA, Daniel Fossett of Cumberland, Betsy Birge of Liberty and John Fossett of Hollis.
Final arrangements are being coordinated by Desmond Funeral Home in Bath with visiting hours 2-6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21, at the Chocolate Church on Washington Street, and a celebration of Ed's life there at 6 p.m. followed by fellowship and light refreshments. A family burial will follow at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in the name of "Edwin H. Pert" to any Greater Bath, Georgetown or Maine charity. To express your thoughts and condolences with the family, please visit www.desmondfuneralhomes.com.