Merle Garrnett “Gaga” Lounsbury

FARMINGTON – Merle Garrnett “Gaga” Lounsbury died peacefully on Sept. 13, 2022, at 87 years old after a courageous battle with acute lymphoma. Born on Nov. 24, 1934, in Orono, Merle was the son of Enoch and Cecilia (Doucette) Lounsbury and brother to Gloria, Eleanor, Winifred, Joe, Jane, and Kenny. The Lounsbury family were faithful parishioners of St. Mary’s Church in Orono. As his high school yearbook tribute (“Merle is strong and very tall and he can play any kind of ball”.) states, Merle excelled in sports throughout his youth and was inducted into the Hall of Fame at Orono High School. It was at Orono High School where he met the love of his life, Ann Keyo, and they were married on June 26, 1959, and were devoted to each other for 63 years. Ann and Merle shared a love of hiking, particularly in the Acadia National Park and Rangeley Lakes region. 

Merle received his bachelor’s degree from Gorham Teachers College. After serving his country in Germany, he earned his master’s degree from the University of Maine. He enjoyed a career as an industrial arts teacher at Bangor High School for over 30 years, spending his summers in Rangeley, ME building houses with SA Collins and Son. He helped to build the camp where the family spent every summer in Rangeley.

Ann and Merle raised three sons, Mike, Jack, and Tim, in Orono. Their sons followed in Merle’s footsteps engaging in various athletic activities, with Merle never missing a game or event. He loved supporting both Bangor and Orono High School sports, and became a loyal fan of Rangeley High School sports teams in his later years.

Ann and Merle welcomed daughters-in-law Cathy (Tim) and LaDawn (Jack) into their family and have been a model of love and commitment for both. Merle was the loving grandfather (“Gaga”) to Cathy and Tim’s children Cameron Lounsbury, Zachary Lounsbury, and Victoria Lounsbury, sharing his love of hiking, fishing, and building with them, and gifting them with a love of the outdoors, Jack and LaDawn’s daughter, Brooke Robertson and Jack’s son, Sam Lounsbury. Merle was also “Gaga” to Ana Porter, Angie Vowell, Frank Viscariello, an Ashley Farris, who cherished their visits to the mountains of Maine from Texas. Merle welcomed his grandchildren’s friends to Rangeley, often entertaining them with his quick wit.

Ann and Merle retired to Rangeley and were devoted parishioners of Our Lady of the Lakes Catholic Church in Oquossoc. Merle was the captain of the “Mingo Duffers” at Mingo Springs Golf Course, a fixture in the Rangeley morning coffee crew, a loyal Rangeley High School sports fan, and a support to those in need. On most days, however, Merle could be found riding his tractor, creating gardens filled with flowers local to the Rangeley region, building furniture for his family, and reading in his favorite spot on the deck overlooking Rangeley Lake, always not too far from “Annie”. 

Services for Merle will be at St. Luke’s Catholic Church, 19 Lake St., Rangeley, on Saturday, Sept. 24, at 11 a.m., with a celebration of life to follow at The Rangeley Inn. All are welcome.

Memories are encouraged to be shared in his Book of Memories at Memorial services are being cared for and provided by the Wiles Remembrance Center of Farmington.

Remembrance gifts may

be given to:

Ecumenical Food Pantry

c/o Treasurer

PO Box 1028

Rangeley, ME 04970

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