Penney Strong – A community supports one of their own

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MECHANIC FALLS — To show support for their co-worker, friend and a family that nearly created their town, the Town of Mechanic Falls and Mechanic Falls Sanitary District employees all donned Penney Strong T-shirts on Jan. 10.

A person would be hard pressed to find a story of Mechanic Falls without reading about the Penney Family. A prominent name in the town, most historical artifacts mention J.W. Penney, S.R. Penney, or display a picture of the iconic mill. The mill, established in 1875, was a large source of employment for the town and was passed down to future generations for many years.

Residents today have fond memories of the Penney Family and call on Scott Penney, who is in charge of the Public Works Department for the town, on a regular basis for assistance. In 2015, Scott received the devastating news that his daughter, Anne Penney Pickett, was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Anne fought a difficult fight against the disease for two years with her family by her side. The Mechanic Falls plows were painted pink in support of the Penney Family. The family created a fundraising effort selling T-shirts displaying the “Penney Strong” logo. #PenneyStrong was created.

The family participated in the annual Dempsey Challenge in Anne’s honor. During the most recent Dempsey Challenge, Patrick Dempsey himself placed a Facetime call to Anne and offered encouraging support.

On Nov. 27, 2017, with her family by her side, Anne lost her battle with cancer.

Mechanic Falls Police Department personnel wear special badges each October in honor of Anne Penney Pickett’s battle with breast cancer. They are, from left, front row, Officer Zachary West and Chief Jeffrey Goss; and, back, Sgt. James Daigle and Michelle Emery.

Mechanic Falls sanitary district personnel wearing Penny Strong shirts are, from left, Nick Konstantoulakis, Carrie White and Brian Ahlquist.

Mechanic Falls town employees wear their Penney Strong T-shirts. From left are Koriene Low, Julie Ward, Miranda Hinkley, Lisa Prevost and Fred Collins Jr.

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