John F. Roberts

WATERFORD — John F. Roberts, 96, of Waterford and York, passed away peacefully on May 8, 2011, with family by his side.

Born in Boston, Mass., on June 15, 1914, John was the first born son of Irish parents Thomas F. and Ellen White Roberts.

On Nov. 27, 1940, he married Beatrice E. Dow of Milbridge.

John graduated from Boston School of Commerce, attended two years at Castine Normal School, graduated from Boston University in 1938 with a B.S. degree in Education and received a Master of Science degree in Education from Gorham State Teacher’s College in 1967.

A U.S. history teacher for 37 years, he taught in Milbridge and next in Eastport for the government Quoddy Project, to enhance Air Force pilots’ knowledge of American history before military service. He taught in Milo, before coming to Norway in 1943 where for some time, he coached high school football, basketball and baseball, along with his teaching duties.

In 1975, he was selected a “distinguished teacher” by the Freedom’s Foundation at Valley Forge for “his outstanding work in helping students to a better understanding of the American way of life.”

John served as president of the Oxford County Schoolmasters Club and president of the Oxford County Teachers Association. After retiring in June 1977, he maintained contact with many of his former students.

In retirement, he served as selectman for the Town of Waterford and as a trustee of the Norway Country Club. John was an avid Red Sox fan and greatly enjoyed the outdoors, hunting with his son-in-law and grandsons, fishing and golfing. A faithful and loving husband, father and grandfather, he relished time spent with family and friends.

He was predeceased by siblings Mary, Thomas, William and James.

He is survived by his wife of 70 years, Beatrice E. Dow; a son, Thomas W. Roberts of Kailua, Hawaii; a daughter, Judith R. Goodell of York; two grandsons and two granddaughters.

John was a communicant of Saint Catherine of Siena Church in Norway, where a celebration of his life will be held on Friday, July 15, at 11 a.m. Interment will be at Lakeview Cemetery in Norway.

If desired, a gift in John’s memory may be made to: The Stephens Memorial Hospital Teaching Program, Stephens Memorial Hospital, 181 Main St. #1, care of Development Office, Norway, ME 04268-5648.

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