1951 – 2016

MECHANIC FALLS — Gary Gravel, 65, of Mechanic Falls, died peacefully on Thursday, March 31, with his family and longtime friend, Gary, by his side, from complications of his courageous two and a half year battle with cancer.

Gary was born in Lewiston on March 5, 1951, to parents Lucien and Anita (Goulet) Gravel. He graduated from Edward Little High School in 1969.

He worked as an LTL Class A truck driver for more than 40 years. He had over a million accident-free driving miles. He started his career in the trucking industry with Dugas Express, working there more than 18 years, many of them as their Portland terminal manager. He then worked for Coles Express as a driver, as well as a safety trainer. His last employment was with Conway Freight for more than 15 years. He was also one of their driver safety trainers. He has driven almost everything from straight trucks to tankers to double trailers. He loved driving trucks; even in his sleep he was shifting gears and double clutching.

He married his wife, Michelle Ballard on Oct. 25, 1992. He enjoyed camping, grilling on the barbecue and riding his Harley. When he could no longer ride his Harley due to the cancer, his favorite enjoyment was going for a ride in his ’81 Corvette. His grandchildren, nieces and nephews were the light of his life.

He is survived by his wife and soul mate, Michelle Gravel of Mechanic Falls; sons, Adam Gravel and wife, Shasta, of Mechanic Falls, and Matthew Gravel and girlfriend, Lindsey Neal, of Lewiston; his grandchildren, Alyssa Gravel of Lewiston, and Addison and Ryan Gravel of Mechanic Falls; brother, Dennis Gravel and wife, Claire, of Lewiston; sister, April Kennedy and husband, John, of Auburn; parents-in-law, Stacy and Sandra Ballard of Mechanic Falls; brother-in-law, Michael Ballard of Mechanic Falls; sister-in-law, Melissa (Ballard) Archer and husband, Jim, of Chesterville; brother-in-law, Mark Ballard and girlfriend, Tammy Curtis, of New Gloucester; nieces and nephews, Michael Gravel of Lewiston, Rachel Kennedy Arnold of South Berwick, Michael Ballard II of Mechanic Falls, Matthew Archer of Brewer, Madison Archer of Chesterville, Jimmy Archer of Chesterville; aunts and uncles, Gloria and Henry Levesque of Greene and Marcel and Joni Goulet of Turner; the mother of his two sons, Linda (Pelchat) Letourneau and husband, Greg, of New Sharon; his friend of 40 plus years, Gary Adler and wife, Linda, of Winter Garden, Fla.; and many wonderful cousins.

He was predeceased by his loving parents; godparents, Hervey and Terry Gravel; sister-in-law, Ronda Ballard; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Gary’s family would like to thank his longtime primary care physician, Dr. Douglas Smith and his nurse, Beth; his oncologist, Dr. Mahesh Pandey; and all the wonderful nurses and support staff at the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at St. Mary’s; his radiation oncologist, Dr. Michael Brown and his nurse, Jeff, at Central Maine Medical Center. Also, Gary’s home health nurse, Kim, and hospice nurse Tammy.

Online condolences may be shared with his family at www.chandlerfunerals.com.

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