BELFAST - John Webb Avener, 89, died on December 31, 2014 surrounded by family and friends. He was born on June 11, 1925 the son of the late Harry and Jean (Eastman) Avener. He lived in the community of Sherwoodville, Town of Ramapo, New York for the first 47 years of his life, resettling in Maine in 1972. He was a Coast Guard veteran of World War II. He served as a torpedo man and later as gunner's mate on the Destroyer Escort USS Ramsden, DE 382 in the Caribbean, Mediterranean, and North and South Atlantic, earning one battle star. He had worked as a delivery and serviceman in the LP gas business for 38 years, the last 31 for Suburban Propane, retiring in 1986. He hunted and fished for all of his life and loved the woods and the wild places. He carried on the ancient craft of splint basket making, which he learned as a boy in the Ramapo Mountains of New York, where making baskets was a way of life. His work was in demand by collectors from Maine to California. He had a lifelong love for old time country music and could sing and play almost anything on the guitar. He was a life member of the National Rifle Association, a member of the Sportsman's Alliance of Maine, a past member of the Maine Crafts Association, and a member of the Destroyer Escort Sailor's Association.
He was predeceased by his beloved wife Eleanor. He is survived by his sons, Daniel Avener and his wife Tally of Belfast, William Avener and his wife Barbara of Highland Mills, NY, his grandchildren Catherine Avener, Emily Avener Haynes and her wife Cassie Haynes, Margaret Avener, Richard Avener and his wife Danielle, his great granddaughter Eleanor Renee Avener, special friends Tom Seymour, Dennis & Barbara Lucas and his faithful Golden Retriever Annie.
John's family would like to thank Dr. Thomas Maycock, Kno-Wal-Lin Home Healthcare and Hospice, Hospice Volunteers of Waldo County and Sussman House and all the staff of those organizations for their skill, care and compassion.
Donations can be made to: Destroyer Escort Historical Museum, PO Box 1926, Albany, NY 12201-1926.