ROCKLAND – Arnold B. Wass, 96, died Tuesday, September 3, 2019 at Sussman Hospice House in Rockport following a brief illness.
Born in Bucks Harbor, August 20 1923, he was the youngest of five children born to Hervey and Mabel Crowley Wass. Growing up on Libby Island where his father was a Light Keeper, he lived there until he was two years old. Although he moved to Machias as a young boy, he absorbed all the ways of island life and enjoyed many summers hunting, fishing and lobstering as his father continued as light keeper until 1940.
In Machias he attended school, and graduated from high school there. Following high school he enlisted in the US Army where he began his tour in Africa with the 45th Division, 180th Infantry (The Thunderbirds) during World War II. Along with his division, he would march through Italy, France and into Germany where he helped liberate the German Concentration Camp, Dacahau. He was involved the Battle of the Bulge. Arnold was honorably discharged in 1945.
Returning to the States Arnold moved to Rockland to live near his parents who settled in Thomaston and his brother, Irwin who lived in Rockland. While living there, Arnold met the love of his life, Cynthia Tibbetts, who was the babysitter for Irwin’s children. On June 22, 1947, Arnold and Cynthia were married at Bremen Union Church. The first seven years of their marriage, they lived in Glen Cove and for 59 years resided at their home on Limerock Street in Rockland until Cynthia’s passing in 2012. Arnold continued to live in his home on Limerock Street until three days before his passing.
For his entire career Arnold was proud to be a professional tractor trailer truck driver. With a career that spans over 40 years and more than 5 million miles, Mr. Wass began driving for Rockland Lime Company, and continued with B&R Trucking, Cushman Bakery and for many years hauled cement for Dragon Cement. Mr. Wass retired at 84 years of age from Paulsen Brother’s after working with them for over 20 years. He was always amused to retell the story of the time he drove a trailer full of live chickens straight through downtown Manhattan, New York.
Never one to be idle, he always kept busy around his own home and the neighborhood. If he wasn’t driving a truck, he was usually driving a lawn tractor. He took great joy in helping his neighbors often doing small repair jobs, mowing lawns, and painting houses.
Other than his parents, Arnold was predeceased by his two older brother and two older sisters. He is survived by his sons, Dwight F. Wass, Keith A. Wass and his wife Marcy all of Lincolnville, Eric C. Wass and his wife Valerie of Rockland; four grandchildren, Jeffrey Wass, Patrick Wass, Jennifer Wass, Michelle Cianchette and her husband Tucker; five great-grandchildren, Gaige Wass, Wyatt Pollis, Rocco Cianchette, Leo Cianchette and Mabel Cianchette; his four-legged companion, his miniature poodle, Dee Dee, who was his constant companion; as well as several nieces and nephews.
Mr. Wass’ family is forever grateful for the wonderful care and support he has received over the past few years from his personal care givers. Their love and support allowed him to stay in his home and maintain his independence to the very end. Also, a special thank you to all of the caring staff at the Sussman House who assisted the Wass family during Arnolds last days.
A celebration of Arnold’s life will be held at 1:00 p.m., Friday, September 6, 2019 at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock Street, Rockland, A reception will follow at the funeral home’s ‘104 Limerock’ reception facility.