Ralph B. Bartholomew

GORHAM — Ralph Bryant Bartholomew, 85, of Gorham, formerly of Lake Worth, Fla., and Portland, died peacefully in the company of his loving family after a long journey with Alzheimer’s, on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2010, at the Gorham House.

He is the husband of Geraldine Rose (Macisso) Bartholomew.

He was born in Bristol on July 26, 1925, the son of the late Samuel R. and Nellie (Bryant) Bartholomew. He grew up in East Deering and attended Portland schools.

In July 1943, he left Deering High School during his junior year and enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard. He served his country proudly as a Carpenters Mate, working on lighthouses along the U.S. Coast until his mother’s premature death in 1946. After returning home, he met, courted (under the watchful eyes of her four brothers) and married Geraldine Macisso on Feb. 12, 1947. They were happily married together for 63 years.

Ralph retired as the Warehouse supervisor for Hannaford Brothers in 1980 after 26 years. He was a company man in the truest sense of the word. Over the years, as a result of his loyalty, hard work and dedication, he rose from warehouse man to supervisor. Not because of any degree or privilege, but because he worked hard along side his men, they respected him, trusted him and followed him. He empathized with each of them, laughed with them and toiled with them. He knew each on a personal level. He carried this work ethic on to Florida and worked for another ten years for Publix Supermarket. His work was his passion and his identity. His true love was his faith, his wife and family and his friends and his country. He dedicated himself to each with the same degree of energy and commitment. They were his pride and joy. He loved people. He connected to each in a unique and special way. He loved to eat and drink and share his joy in each. He believed in his hero and his God. He loved working with his hands. Whatever he created, he shared. But most of all, he loved to laugh.

Besides his wife, he is survived by his four children, Ralph S. of Raymond, Patricia N. Docsh of West Palm Beach, Fla., Rita C. Heselton of Kennebunk, and Thomas M. of South Portland; nine grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

A memorial visitation was held on Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010, in the Great Room of the Gorham House, 50 New Portland Road, Gorham. A memorial Mass was held on Monday, Nov. 22, 2010, at St. Peter’s Roman Catholic Church, 72 Federal Street, Portland. Arrangements are under the direction of Jones, Rich & Hutchins Funeral Home, 199 Woodford Street, Portland. Please visit www.jonesrichandhutchins.com for additional information and to sign Ralph’s guest book.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory can be made to: Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter, 170 U.S. Route One, Ste. 250, Falmouth, ME 04105.

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