THOMASTON - Harold (Wig) LeRoy Wiggin, 92, passed away peacefully at the Sussman House with his loving family by his side on August 4, 2019.
Wig was born in South Thomaston on April 24, 1927 to LeRoy Wiggin and Nellie (Steiof) Wiggin. He was the second of six children. He attended schools in South Thomaston and Rockland.
Wig left Rockland High School in his senior year and enlisted in the United States Navy as a Combat Air Crewman. He joined the American Legion at Post #1 in Rockland two days after being honorably discharged from the Navy in June 1946. Returning to Rockland High School, he received his diploma. Wig then attended the University of Maine for two years and when the Korean War broke out, he re-enlisted in the Navy, serving on the aircraft carrier, USS Kula Gulf until he was once again honorably discharged from active duty. However, he remained in the Naval Reserves.
In 1952 he married Alice Luce and they had two daughters and a son. Wig then found employment painting houses for his father. During the winter of 1955, he worked for Nate Birliawsky as a house man and security at the famous Thorndike Hotel. Later that year, he was hired as a house to house salesman and worked for 12 years for Harris Baking Company, working in Lincolnville, Camden, Rockland and Owls Head. In 1966, Wig was hired by Knox County Community Action Program (KCCAP) as their second employee. He became the Director of the Federal Program, “Neighborhood Youth Corps”, placing high school drop outs in nonprofit work sites and providing night school so they could receive their GED. While working for KCCAP, he assisted Reverend Kinney in putting together the grant for the Methodist Conference Home in Rockland. As acting CAP Director, Wig started the first year-round Head Start Program in the Mary Taylor School in Camden. He was one of the grant writers for the free transportation buses for senior citizens which later became the Knox County Trans Buses. On December 24, 1969 he was married to Phyllis E. Driscoll.
In 1973, he was hired as the Director of Employment and Training Programs for the Mid-Coast area (Waldo, Knox, Lincoln and Sagadahoc counties). Those programs ended in 1978 and Harold was hired to set up and direct employment training programs for Knox County Human Resources and the Knox County Commissioners. The programming ended in 1981 and he chose to retire at that time. After retiring, Wig volunteered at Pen Bay Medical Center as an escort worker. He did this for twenty years until a disability forced him to give it up.
In his younger days, Wig enjoyed hunting and fishing and caught some trophy size fish. He also enjoyed bowling and started playing golf at age forty. Three years later he won the presidents Club Trophy at the Rockland Golf Club. He continued playing golf after retirement with three very good friends in the Central Maine Tournaments for ten years until he was physically unable to. For two years, Wig served as post Commander of American Legion post #37 in Thomaston and later, as Knox County Commander. He was also a lifetime member of the Knights of Pythias in Thomaston where he served as treasurer for nine years and received the Chancellor Commander Citation.
Preceded in death by his parents, Wig is survived by his loving wife of 49 and a half years, Phyllis E. Wiggin; daughters, Wanda Fortin and her husband Michael of Mercer, Ruthie Wiggin of Thomaston; a son Ron Wiggin and his wife Claudia of Cushing; a brother Eugene Wiggin of Owls Head; sisters, Marjorie Kalloch of South Thomaston, Ava Allen of Owls Head, Victoria Mason of Webster MA, Ida Perry and her husband Fran of Owls Head; grandchildren, Bryon Fortin, Calli Meader and her husband Jeremy, Meagan Paulovkin and her husband Jason, Katie Wiggin; step-grandchildren, Miranda Kelly and her husband Michael and Leah Hirschvogel and her husband Justin; great-grandchildren, Maddox Meader and Kendrick Meader; step-great-grandchildren, Sophia Kelly, Bennett Kelly and Amelia Kelly; as well as several nephews and nieces. He is also survived by his beloved dog, Lil’ Gracie, whom he cherished for twelve years.
The family would like to express their sincere appreciation to Dr. Mark Eggena and his staff as well as the staff and volunteers at the Sussman House who provided such loving care to Wig and his family during the end of his journey. He will be deeply missed by all those whose lives he touched and those who loved him so very much.
Family and friends are invited to visit from 5:00 to 7:00pm Thursday, August 8, 2019 at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock Street, Rockland where a celebration of his life will be held at 11:00am, Friday, August 9, 2019. The Rev. Kenneth Dale will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Sussman House, c/o PenBay Waldo Healthcare Foundation, 22 White St., Rockland, ME 04841.
Arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland. To share a memory or condolence with Wig’s family, please visit their book of memories at bchfh.com.