Merrill E. Morang, 91, died Feb. 25, 2010, at Veterans Medical Center in Togus, after a brief illness.

Born in Lubec on Sept. 14, 1918, he was the son of William E. and Maggie Boomer Morang. He attended schools in Eastport before moving to Rockland in 1933, where he also attended local schools.

On Nov. 6, 1942, he married Helmi Lehto in Rockland. The couple lived in Glen Cove all their married lives, where they raised their family. Mrs. Morang died April 7, 1986.

On May 1, 1987, he married Barbara H. Brackett Welsh in Rockland.

Prior to World War II, he served with the Civilian Conservation Corps 158th Company, and from Aug. 16, 1940, with the National Guard as a member of the 240th Coast Artillery, Battery F, in Thomaston. He was later inducted into the U.S. Army, and served throughout World War II with the 82nd Airborne Division. In recognition of his valiant service, Merrill was awarded the American Defense Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, European Theater Medal with three Battle Stars and a Bronze Star Medal.

Returning to civilian life, Merrill worked more than 26 years in the distribution department at Van Baalens in Rockland, retiring in 1982.

He never forgot the camaraderie and friendships made during his service with the 82nd Airborne, and in association with that was an active member of the 82nd Airborne Association, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment Association, and the Black Bear Maine Chapter of the 82nd Airborne Division. He was a member by invitation of the 40/8 La Socièté 40/8 No. 763, and was a past chef de gare of the 40/8, 1272, Rockland.

Merrill attended the Littlefield Memorial Baptist Church and was a life member of the Rockland Lodge of Elks No. 1008 in Rockland. He was twice past commander of Winslow-Holbrook-Merritt American Legion Post No. 1 in Rockland. he was past county and district commander of the American Legion and a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars No. 2499 in Rockland and the Military Order of the Cooties. He was also a member of the Rockland Lodge of Masons, No. 79, the Over 60 Club at Littlefield Memorial Baptist Church and the Rockland Senior Citizens Club.

For more than 25 years, he coordinated and personally helped put out Memorial Day flags on veterans’ graves in area cemeteries. He also participated in procurement of the Veterans Memorial Stone, originally placed at Rankin and Union streets in Rockland.

In more recent years, he enjoyed eating out, doing puzzles, playing cards and traveling. He enjoyed trips to England, Germany, Luxemburg, the British Isles and Ireland, as well as trips throughout the United States and Canada.

Besides his wife, Barbara, of Rockland, Merrill is survived by one son, William D. Morang of Rockport; one daughter, Susan Marie Morang of Washington; one stepson, Stephen Welsh of Westbrook; one brother, Kenneth V. Morang of Lincolnville Center; one grandson, Leif E. Parsell of Washington and Boston; as well as several nieces and nephews.

Friends and relatives are invited to visit Thursday, March 4 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St. in Rockland. A funeral service followed by military honors will be held Friday, March 5at 2 p.m. at Littlefield Memorial Baptist Church, One Waldo Avenue in Rockland. The Rev. Branan Becknell will officiate. Spring interment will be in Achorn Cemetery in Rockland.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Pen Bay Christian Schools, One Waldo Avenue, Rockland, ME 04841; or the Humane Society of Knox County, P.O. Box 1294, Rockland, ME 04841.