Charlie Boothby

BANGOR – Charlie Boothby passed away Jan. 23, 2022, at a local hospital.

He was born to Laurence B. Boothby and E. Louise (Ricker) Boothby on the family farm in Livermore, Maine. He was christened in the Second Universalist Church of Livermore and remained a proud Universalist his whole life.

Charlie was educated in one-room schoolhouses for grades one to five, where he helped start the woodstove in the morning, and for grades six to eight he went to the big school that had four rooms. He attended Leavitt Institute (now Leavitt District High School) and graduated in 1953.

He attended the University of Maine in Orono majoring in Agronomy. He was a member of TKE Fraternity, serving a year as Chapter President. While at UMO he met Judy White, whose parents were not initially impressed until he offered to sharpen his future mother-in-law’s knives to a fine edge. Charlie and Judy were married during the great slush storm of February 8, 1958 at the First Universalist Church in Bangor.

They moved to Falmouth for Charlie’s new job with the Soil Conservation Service (SCS), working as a Farm Planner. The next month, the Draft Board called him to report for a physical and to board a train for Fort Dix, N.J. While in basic training, Charlie was recruited by the Army Counterintelligence Corps (CIC). After CIC training in Baltimore, he was sent to Fort McPherson in Georgia for the rest of his 2-year enlistment. In August 1959, he received a Direct Commission in the Corps of Engineers and stayed in the Army Reserves until his retirement in 1989 with the rank of Colonel.

In 1960, Charlie went back to work with SCS in Cumberland and Oxford Counties. In 1962, he was appointed District Conservationist for Waldo County, so they moved to Belfast with first son, Tim, then Andy and Paul arriving while they lived at Head of Tide.

In 1964 he accepted appointment as the first Executive Director of the Maine Soil and Water Conservation Commission, based in Augusta. They moved to Winthrop and Charlie taught his boys how to pull weeds, paddle a canoe and catch fish through the ice.

In 1976, Charlie earned a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Maine at Augusta and was offered a position with the National Association of Conservation Districts in Washington, D.C. so the family moved to Fairfax, Virginia where all three boys graduated from Chantilly High School.

In 2000, Charlie and Judy decided it was time to move back home to Maine, and they settled in Judy’s family home in Bangor. Charlie leapt headlong into leadership roles in the church including Council Chairman of the Unitarian Universalist Society of Bangor, President of the Northeast District of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), and President of the Northern New England District, UUA.

Outside the church, he served eight years on Bangor’s Historic Preservation Commission, including as Chairman, and eight years on the City of Bangor Planning Board, also serving as chairman, and 17 years on the Bangor Housing Authority, including as vice-chair.

He also helped the development of the Bangor Community Gardens, enabling many neighbors to grow their own food. This was a natural extension of his lifelong interest in gardening. He also taught a course on gardening at Senior College.

For several years, Charlie was a volunteer gleaner at the Brewer Farmers Market, collecting produce for Maine Harvest for Hunger, and delivering it to the Ecumenical Food Cupboard in Bangor.

Charlie served six years on the board of Genesis Corp, a community development institution which loaned funds for housing in the central coastal area.

One of his proudest roles was serving on the board of Four Directions Development Corporation, which provides loans to persons of the four Wabanaki tribes in Maine.

In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his sister, Eleanor Thayer of Minot, his oldest son Timothy in 1984 at age 23, and his middle son Andrew in 2018 at age 55. He is survived by his wife, Judy, his son, Rev. Paul Boothby and his wife Krista of Easton, MD, grandson Taylor Boothby of Palm City, FL and Bangor, his brother Samuel and his wife Anna and family of Gorham, sister Wilma and husband Bill Irish and family of Livermore.

Charlie and Judy wish to thank Judy’s classmates of Bangor High School class of 1953, and Judy’s brother Ralph White and his wife, Joni (Averill) White for helping reintroduce them to the Bangor Community.

A Memorial Service will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Bangor sometime after ice-out, followed by burial with military honors at Mount Hope Cemetery.

Condolences to the family may be submitted to Brookings

Memorial Gifts will be most welcome at Four Directions Development Corp, 20 Godfrey Drive, Orono, ME 04473, or at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Bangor, 120 Park St., Bangor 04401.

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