1919 – 2016

READFIELD — Raymond James Siegler, 97, died peacefully Wednesday, Dec. 21, following a brief illness.

He was born Dec. 6, 1919, at Franklin Square, Long Island, N.Y., son of Lawrence and Barbara Heckman Siegler. After graduating from high school, Ray enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard, but not before corresponding with a pen pal from Warren he had discovered in the local newspaper. He corresponded with and eventually met Madeleine Haskell. They married in 1944.

After discharge from the Coast Guard as radioman, first class, Ray and Madeleine settled in the Augusta area, where he took a position at the Kennebec Journal. He began as a “cub reporter” and ended his career in 1981 as managing editor. Their six children were raised in the Readfield and Augusta areas.

After retirement, Ray served as “head gardener” for Mady’s business, “Monks Hill Herbs and Perennials.” He was one with himself in the gardens, on walking/hiking trails and all things of nature. He was an avid reader since boyhood and maintained a vast library on a variety of topics. He was a self-described “man of print” — much preferred over telephone and certainly not newer technologies. Ray continued writing columns for the Kennebec Journal after retirement, as well as “memoirs” for family members.

Sometime after Madeleine’s death in 1993, he met Lois (Webber) Williams of Mount Vernon. They married in November 1999 — a “bonus marriage.” Ray and Lois enjoyed 17 years at the East Readfield homestead. His “bonus family” contributed much to his later years. Ray was recently awarded the Boston Post cane as the town of Readfield’s oldest resident.

Surviving is his wife, Lois (Williams) Siegler; two daughters, AnneMarie (Michael) Johnson of Tucson, Ariz., and Susan (Barry Crafts) of Farmington; four sons, Raymond Jr. (Shirley) of Lisbon, Stephen (Cynthia) of Feeding Hills, Mass., Lawrence (Claudia Bell) of Farmington and Paul (Andrea) of Mesa, Ariz.; 19 grandchildren; and 27 great-grandchildren. Ray is also survived by 11 step-children, Clyde (Cathy), Cynthia (Noel) Pelliccia, Barbara (Kevin) Hoehn, Patricia (William) Flewelling, Alan (Donna), Lois Flenner, Joel, Margaret Williams (Terry) Knowles, Beverly (Paul) Olson, Norma (James) Polley, and Daniel (Angelique); 14 step-grandchildren; and 17 step-great-grandchildren.

Ray was predeceased by his first wife, Madeleine, in 1993; and his five siblings.

Guest Book