Lionel 'Fred' Upham
CUSHING — Lionel “Fred” Upham, 72, died Thursday, July 12, 2012, surrounded by his family, following a long illness.
Born in Rockland on June 17, 1940, he was the son of Raymond F. and Elizabeth Sprowl Upham. Fred grew up in Thomaston where he attended local schools and was a 1959 graduate of Thomaston High School.
On June 18, 1961, he married L. Brenda Smith in Thomaston. The couple made their home in Thomaston where they began their family.
In the early 1960s, Fred purchased a taxi business in Thomaston and operated that business as Upham’s Taxi more than 15 years.
He began employment as a guard at the Maine State Prison, Thomaston, in 1966. He was later appointed recreation director at the prison and soon after received promotion to the rank of captain. In 1978 he was appointed captain of the Bolduc Unit (Prison Farm) in Warren, and moved his family to the captain’s residence there. He retired in 1992 following 26 years service with the Department of Corrections, Maine State Prison System.
During that same period, Fred served as a civil deputy with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, and continued in that work until 2009, having completed 19 years service with the sheriff’s department.
An avid sportsman, he played baseball and softball while in school and continued on men’s leagues including the Over 40 League and Rockland Lodge of Elks team. His passion for the sport was so great, that while on his honeymoon, Fred participated in a Boston Red Sox try-out event. In earlier years he enjoyed umpiring Little League ball games.
Fred was a longtime active member of the Winslow-Holbrook-Merritt American Legion Post No. 1, Sons of the American Legion, where he enjoyed and was noted for cooking hot dogs every Saturday. He was also a longtime member of the Rockland Lodge of Elks, No. 1008.
Although a fiercely private individual, Fred loved spending time with his friends and family. For many years he was an annual camper at Sandy Shores, and more recently at Mic Mac Campground. He enjoyed Sunday drives with his family. A fan of country and western music, he particularly enjoyed Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson.
Other than his parents Fred was predeceased by one brother, Arnold Upham. He is survived by his wife, Brenda; three daughters and their husbands, Amy and Anthony Greenlaw of Cushing, Julie and Raymond Bellefleur of Wiscasset, and Rebecca and Samuel Elwell of Cushing; his brothers, sisters and spouses, Raymond and Beverly Upham of Port Clyde, Patricia and Donald Demmons of Cushing, Robert and Elaine Upham of Windsor, Paula Upham, Gary and Sue Upham, and Nancy Upham, all of Thomaston; six grandchildren, David Elwell and his fiancée Angela Coppola, Joseph Cormier III, Michael Cormier and his fiancée Victoria Hoffses, Jonathan Cormier, Kathleen Cormier and Kendra Bellefleur; as well as many nieces and nephews.
A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, July 23 at Village Cemetery, Erin Street, Thomaston. The Rev. Wayne Sawyer will officiate. A celebration of life will follow at Winslow-Holbrook-Merritt, American Legion Post No. 1, 336 Limerock St., Rockland.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Maine Children’s Cancer Program, 100 U.S. Route 1, Unit 107, Scarborough, ME 04075.
To share a memory or story with Fred’s family, please visit his online Book of Memories at www.bchfh.com. Arrangements are in the care of Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland.