WILTON – Joseph O. Perry, affectionately called “Joe”, “Orman”, or “Gramps”, 98 of Wilton, passed away on Wednesday, May 11, 2021 at his home in Wilton, surrounded by his family. He was born in Wilton on Nov. 1, 1922, son of Lena and Dan Perry. He was one of five children. He attended school and then at the early age of 13 he was working full-time in the woods at the end of a bucksaw.
On Nov. 17, 1942 he married Ethel M. (Libby) Perry in the Methodist Parsonage in Wilton. Together they would raise three girls and create a foundation of love, strength, faith, and family that would filter through all who had the privileged of knowing them. He had a work ethic like no other and over the years had maintained employment at the shipyard in South Portland before the draft, in later years retiring from G.H. Bass in Wilton, and finally as a bus driver for S.A.D. # 9 in Farmington. He continued to work post retirement as a driver for Western Maine Transportation and many other volunteer organizations well into his 70s.
He was a proud WWII Veteran, serving as an amphibious engineer in the Army, he earned the Good Conduct Medal, Asiatic Theatre Campaign Medal with Bronze Arrowhead, and the Philippine Liberation Medal. He had a zest for life and was an avid outdoorsman. He spent many seasons hunting, fishing, and camping in Maine, a state he constantly reminded us, we were blessed to live in.
Having lived his entire life in the town of Wilton, the only other place he truly loved was a small wilderness campground near Baxter State Park, Nesowadnehunk. He, along with many friends and family found this to be a sanctuary and many memories were made upon the shores of that special place.
He had a love for the horse and dog races, chess, cribbage, poker, card playing, running (until almost 80), walking and bowling. His extremely competitive nature was ever present and he could turn any activity into a “game”. He was a very prominent member of both the Legion and the Freemasons. He was also a baptized member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Farmington. He led a life of service and devotion and was an inspiration to all who were blessed to know him.
He is survived by daughter JoAnn Gould, and her husband David Gould, currently at Sandy River Rehabilitation Center; grandchildren, Clifton Tardif and his wife Karla of Oklahoma, Christi Bubier of Jay, Scott Gould, and his wife Mindy of Washington, Libbi Magoon, and her wife Michelle of Oakland, and Betsy Mancine, and her husband Dominic of Wilton; great-grandchildren, Courtney, Antyna, Merritt, Rhiannon, Emma, and Joey; siblings Irene Weld of Dixfield, Robert Perry of Farmington.
He was predeceased by his wife, Ethel in 2007; daughter, Judith Tardif in 1997, daughter Meredith Farrington in 2016; grandson, Joseph “BJ” Gould in 2014; sister, Doris Cushman in 2020 and brother, Donald Perry in 2021.
Graveside funeral services with U.S. Army Honors and Masonic services conducted by Wilton Lodge #156 will be held Monday, May 17, at 2 p.m. at Lakeview Cemetery in Wilton. Relatives and friends are invited to call at the Wiles Remembrance Center: Adams~McFarlane Chapel, 137 Farmington Falls Rd., Farmington on Monday, May 17 from 11 to 12 p.m.
Memories and a memorial video may be shared in his Book of Memories at http://www.wilesrc.com.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that those who desire, consider memorial gifts in Joe’s memory to
Androscoggin Home Healthcare + Hospice,
15 Strawberry Ave.,
Lewiston, ME 04240 or at