RUMFORD — Less than a day before the passing of Greg Viger, more than a hundred community members gathered outside his room at Rumford Hospital Sunday afternoon to honor and give one final hug to the Rumford man, who was a staple of the community.
Viger, 56, who photographed community events most of his life, died Monday, some two weeks after learning he had stage-four liver cancer.
Dorie Oakes, who helped organize Sunday’s gathering, said, “This incredibly special person has memorialized every special event in Rumford, Mexico and this area for years, and it’s time we celebrate him. This is his day.”
“This is a celebration of life today so he can celebrate with us. So he can know just how much everyone here loves him,” she said.
Melissa Fallon said, “We want to give back to him what he’s given to all of us. We want to give him that hug before we can’t.”
As people held hands and created a half circle in a portion of the hospital parking lot, Viger looked on from his bed, surrounded by family. Viger waved a couple of times, holding his trademark camera in his hands.
And then, on the count of three, everyone waved, made heart shapes with their hands and yelled, “We love you Greg!”
Since graduating from Rumford High School in 1981, Viger had his own business, Photos by Greg Viger, providing photography for engagements, graduations, family gatherings and sporting events.
He had to close his business on Nov. 7, 2018 due to his declining health.
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From his hospital bed, Greg Viger holds his camera as he watches community members pay tribute to him on Sunday. He passed away the next morning.

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