Chapter 5

Career Military

No collection of tributes honoring Maine veterans would be complete without a special section dedicated to those military personnel who made military service their careers. Their dedication, service, and commitment to their country distinguish their professional lives in ways that deserve special recognition.

Among the thousands of requests received by the Secretary of State's office to Vote in Honor of a Veteran, scores of them were tributes to veterans who had military careers spanning decades and including duty in several major military engagements. Some even served in more than one branch of the military.

The following samples represent responses that proudly honor husbands who made the military their careers:

I am voting in honor of my husband, Robert W. Field, who served in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. His active duty was in the U.S. Navy from 1945-1971, when he retired as a Master Chief.
Maxine L. Field, Ellsworth

My husband, Kevin Fortin, served in the Army for 22 years. He went to Korea and then Vietnam early in that war and did real well serving his country. He accomplished a lot on behalf of our family.
Evelyn Fortin, Van Buren


I will be proud to vote in honor of my husband, Albert Friedman, AFCM Navy Retired, who served his country with pride. His love of the Navy was an example to all who served with him. We have been married for 53 years, but he has been in a nursing home since last April; his thoughts of his years in the Navy are all his own now.
Mrs. Hyla Friedman, Jay

Albert Friedman
Albert Friedman

I am voting in honor of my husband, Daniel Gatchell, who served 3 years in the U.S. Army, one of them in Vietnam. Then he served 21 years in the U.S. Coast Guard; he was stationed on icebreakers and participated in search and rescue missions and drug enforcement activities, and spent 12 months on isolated duty on the island of Iwo Jima. He retired in 1993 as a Warrant Officer.
Judythe Gatchell, Brunswick

Raymond E. Bland
Raymond E. Bland


I pay tribute to my husband, Raymond E. Bland, who entered the Marine Corps in 1948. He served in Korea and received the Purple Heart; he also served in Vietnam and retired in 1974. He is very proud of his service to his country and proud of the USMC.
Ruth L. Bland, Wells

My husband, Richard F. Alexander, Sr., served 21 years in the U.S. Coast Guard. He was in the first Tet Offensive in Vietnam in 1967-68 aboard a CG cutter serving with coastal surveillance forces.

Joyce Alexander, South Portland


I will proudly vote in honor of my husband, Fred J. Bowers, Jr., who retired from the Army Air Corps after 30 years of service and is now deceased. He was a radioman during WWII, was wounded, and received the Purple Heart.
Lois H. Bowers, Bangor

Fred J. Bowers, Jr.
Fred J. Bowers, Jr.

I am paying tribute to my husband, Sidney T. Lewis, retired Colonel and physician in the USAF. He served in Vietnam, was a Clinic Commander in the Canal Zone and at Hanscam AFB in Massachusetts, Director of Professional Services at WPAFB in Ohio, and teacher at Brooks AFB in Texas.
Hilda M. Lewis, Eastport
Served in Operation Desert Storm

Sons and daughters voted in honor of fathers whose examples of patriotism and dedication to duty inspired them:

I am voting in honor of my father, Gerald Murphy, who served from 1947-67 and retired as a U.S. Navy Chief. He did 3 tours in Vietnam on the Ranger, the Constellation, and the Midway. My father taught us patriotism by living it. He was very proud to be in the Navy and taught all 3 of his children to be proud to be U.S. citizens.
Diane Whispell, Durham

Our father and father-in-law, Simon L. Soctomah, is a full-blooded Passamaquoddy, who served in the Infantry in WWII and also the Korean War, during which he was wounded. He is the father of 7 children and was proud to have served his country.
Lena Jackson, Londonderry, NH , daughter
Kenneth Jackson, son-in-law
Served in Vietnam

I am proud to vote in honor of both of my parents, Earl and Mary Doliber. My father served in the Navy in WWII and then in the Army with service in Korea and Vietnam until 1966. My mother faithfully followed him from posting to posting, including trips overseas 3 times, and she raised 5 children on the way.
Dana E. Doliber, Sanford
Served in Vietnam, 1967-68

We are proud to be voting in honor of our parents, John and Hattie Nelson. Both served in the U.S. Army. Dad was a hero in the Gulf War and served 16 years active duty. Mom "wore combat boots" in the Women's Army Corps.
Nick and Jennifer Nelson, Lincoln

I am proud of my father, William Harold Knobel, who served in the USMC from 1942_1970, with duty in WWII, the China occupation, Korean peacekeeping efforts (1953) and Vietnam (1965-66).
David Knobel, J.D., Sabattus

I am voting in honor of my father, James Watts, who served in both WWII and Vietnam. He influenced me to join the Navy and to serve my country proudly.
Diane Turcotte, Skowhegan
Served in Vietnam

I am proud of my dad, John L. Ketner, Sr., who served in the Navy for 30 years. He served on the USS Pittsburg in WWII and the USS Houston in the China seas and did several tours in the Pacific. I am very proud of him.
John L. Ketner, Jr., Farmingdale
Served in the Korea, "forgotten war"

My father, William P. Curran, served in the Army for 22 years. His duty included Pearl Harbor, Guadalcanal, the Solomon Islands, Luzon, Philippines, New Caledonia and Korea. During his service he won the Silver Star with Oak Leaf cluster and the Purple Heart.
Bernadette A. Curran Steele, Waldoboro

John C. Hanusek, Sr., 1944
John C. Hanusek, Sr.

I would like to honor my father, John C. Hanusek, Sr., because he has told me many interesting and sad stories of the days he faithfully served. I feel all people should duly respect all veterans for what they did for us. Not enough can be said and done to honor our veterans. I honor my daddy, the flag, and am very proud to say my father has honored and served our country. He taught me the value of life and laughter. With great respect he served on the USS Fargo in the Navy in WWII and as an airplane machinist in the USAF during the Korean Conflict.
Tina Antoine, Saco

Other Maine citizens pay tribute to a family member's lifetime of public service:

We are voting in honor of our grandfather, CWO4 Robert J. Gillis Jr., who served for 26 years in the USAF, with duty during WWII, the Korean Conflict, and Vietnam. He retired to Calais, where he remained active in local politics and served as mayor, state representative, and county commissioner.
Rod E. Tirrell, Calais
Theresa Milton, Calais

Charlotte C. Robertson
Charlotte C. Robertson


I am voting in honor of my wife, Charlotte C. Robertson, who served in the Navy Medical Corps during WWII and Korea.
William P. Robertson III, Franklin
Served in WWII and Korea

George F. Lovejoy, Jr.
George F. Lovejoy, Jr.


I am voting in honor of my brother, George F. Lovejoy, who served in the Navy, in WWII and the
Korean Conflict. He served as Acting Chief, Aviation Machinist Mate on the aircraft carrier Valley Forge and was decorated twice for saving aviators from planes on fire on the deck of the carrier.

George F. Lovejoy, Sr.
George F. Lovejoy, Sr.

My father, George F. Lovejoy, Sr., joined the Navy in 1918 when he was only 15 years old to serve in WWI. Then he served in the Massachusetts National Guard from 1930 until 1940. In 1941, with the threat of war on the horizon, his unit was activated and federalized. He served in the Pacific Theater for the duration of the war. Lt. Col. Lovejoy was awarded the Bronze Star and a number of other citations for action in the Pacific.

His division was pinned down by a superior enemy force for an entire month. We only learned of our father's safety when neighbors of ours in Saugus (Massachusetts) told us that they had seen his picture in a February, 1943 issue of Life. We confirmed that it was indeed his picture and he later acknowledged that he had been photographed overlooking Henderson Field after its recapture by the Americans.
James E. Lovejoy, Unity

Pride in veterans' military careers continues:

We are voting in honor of our uncle, Peter P. Lenosky, who joined the Army Air Force right out of high school. He served in the USAF from 1945-1965. He served his country all over the world and then returned home to raise six children. He loved Maine and Loring AFB. He remained fiercely patriotic until his death 2 years ago.
Carole Reid, Scarborough
Richard W. Reid, Scarborough

Edward Hoyt II
Edward Hoyt II


I am voting in honor of Edward Hoyt II, who served in the Air Force during the Korean War and the Marines during the Vietnam War. He has been very active in veterans' groups and veterans' activities.
Jeanne C. Kempers, Fairfield

My brother
, Ron Bennett, retired as an E-7 after serving 20 years with the Navy Seabees in Cuba, Antarctica, and Vietnam.
Paul L. Bennett, Lebanon

From 1952-1976 I proudly served in the U.S. Air Force with duty in both Korea and Vietnam.
Horatio S. Couture, Benton

I am one of a few in Maine that served in 3 conflicts.
Chauncey Gerry, North Waterboro
Served in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam

I served in the U.S. Coast Guard for more than 20 years. My back was nearly broken in a fall during a search and rescue operation in the North Atlantic. There was a hurricane and the wind was 50 mph and the waves were 40 feet high.
Felix Y. Atienza, Jr., Windham
Served during Vietnam era

Additional Tributes Submitted Online

302 Found


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