SOUTH PARIS — Lyle Edward Wiggin of Bryant Pond died peacefully at the Maine Veterans’ Home in South Paris Saturday, July 4, at the age of 84.

Lyle was born on Oct. 11 in Stow to Fred and Marriette Wiggin. He grew up on the family farm in Chatham, N.H. He attended local elementary schools and graduated from Fryeburg Academy.

Lyle joined the U.S. Air Force after high school and served during the Korean War. He finished his service as staff sergeant in 1954 and was awarded the National Defense Service Medal and Good Conduct Medal. He continued his government service when he joined the U.S. Forest Service, based in the Evans Notch Ranger District. His first Forest Service position was that of fire tower lookout. He worked as a forestry technician for 35 years and retired in 1987.

He married his wife, Linda, in 1981 and settled in the village of Bryant Pond. During the next 33 years, he worked and helped raise his family. Lyle and wife, Linda, were foster parents to over 100 children. He was best known to the children as “Papa Bear.”

His life was filled with many interests. He loved to do research so he collected many books to add to his library. Nature was another love and he studied and observed rare plants, trees, rocks and minerals.

Lyle is survived by his wife, Linda. His family includes his children, Aaron and his wife, Bronwen, of Bryant Pond, Amie Caraballo and her husband, Gilbert, of Lancaster, Mass., Allison of Topsham, Michael of Portland, Benjamin of Bryant Pond; and foster son, Kevin Henderson of Portland. Lyle dearly loved his children and enjoyed watching his family grow with grandchildren. Kaylie, Adam, Andrew, Timothy, Luke and Ellie will miss their Grampy. Lyle also is survived by a dear brother, Clyde and his wife, Sylvia; and many nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Fred and Marriette Wiggin; and his sister, Gloria Crouse.

The family would like to thank the Maine Veterans’ Home for the quality care that he received during his stay.

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