Monthly Archives: May 2015

Passing of Richard Augustus “Dick” Hale

BETHEL – Richard “Dick” Augustus Hale died peacefully Sunday morning, May 17, 2015 after a short period of declining health. He was born in Lewiston, Me, October 5, 1921, the son of Elliott K. and Geraldine (Rideout) Hale.

He attended local schools and graduated from Lisbon Falls High School in 1939. After attending a post graduate year at Philips Academy, he entered the University of Maine at Orono to study forestry. He joined the rifle team and the Alpha gamma Rho fraternity before being called to active duty in 1943. He was commissioned 1st Lieutenant, Armor in 1944 and was sent to Germany to join the Army of Occupation.

Upon honorable discharge, he returned to the University of Maine to complete his degree and then went on to Yale School of Forestry to get his M.F. in 1948. After graduation, He returned to Lisbon Falls and started his own logging and sawmill business, Hale Forest Industries, which integrated all aspects of harvesting and manufacturing. In 1956 he became an independent saw mill consultant and over the next ten years helped various mills with layout and design, quality control, and many other related aspects of wood manufacturing. During this time, he spent 15 years as the secretary of the Town of Lisbon Advisory Board. In 1966 he accepted an appointment as Assistant Professor in the School of Forest Resources at the University of Maine Orono.

In 1967, he married Janine Dumont and moved to Orono where, a year later, they had a daughter, Heather. Over the next 24 years, Dick taught courses in wood processing, wood drying, and wood preservation. He had articles written in over 30 publications and it is estimated that Dick taught over 600 dry kiln operators for Maine industries. He held positions in numerous committees and organizations including: Advisor of University of Maine Woodsmens’ Team, Director of New England Kiln Drying Association (President in 1979), and Senior Reviewer, National Institute of Science and Technology.

After retiring in 1990, Dick continued to be a forest products consultant and became interested in Maine forest history. He served on the board of the Maine Forest and Logging Museum and in 2008 he was honored by the University of Maine Alumni Association, with the Black Bear Award for designing and implementing the Galaxy of Stars Project. He has also written several forwards for many prominent books based on Maine Logging operations. He moved to Bethel in 2008 and served on the board of the Bethel Historical Society, and a member of the American Legion, Mundt-Allen Post 81.

Dick is survived by his wife of 48 years, Jan; his daughter Heather and her husband, David Nivus, their children Corinne and Jocelyn; his brothers Elliott and David; many nephews, nieces, grand nephews and grand nieces.

Family and friends are invited to share tributes and condolences at

Visitation will be held, 6-8PM, Thu., May 21, 2015 at the Chandler Funeral Home & Cremation Service Greenleaf Chapel, 37 Vernon St., Bethel. Funeral services will be held, 11AM, Fri., May 22, 2015 at the Middle Intervale Meeting House, 757 Intervale Rd., Bethel. Committal services with military honors will be held, 1PM, Wed., June 10, 2015 in the chapel of the Maine Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 163 Mt. Vernon Rd., Augusta. Gifts may be given in Dick’s memory to the Bethel Historical Society, 10 Broad St., Bethel, ME 04217 and/or the Maine Forest and Logging Museum, 54 Government Rd., Bradley, ME 04411.

Published in BDN Maine on May 20, 2015

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RNRF’s Spring Meeting on Energy-Water-Climate Nexus

Continuing drought in the west coast and south central part of the US has been the subject of many recent news articles.  Concerns about the causes and effects to our natural resources from this drought were an important part of the program of a recent Renewable Natural Resource Foundation (RNRF) meeting held at the American Geophysical Union on May 6, 2015.


The meetings 20 participants discussed the energy-water nexus and its relationship to climate change. The energy-water nexus describes the inextricable linkage and mutual dependence of water and energy. Talks were given by three experts in the area (pictures from left to right), Roger Gorke, a Senior Policy Officer from the US Environmental Protection Agency, who talked about a case study on the present drought in California; Bob Vallario, a Program Manager from the US Department of Energy, who presented an overview of energy-water related issues and climate change concerns; and Steven Nadel, Executive Director of the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, who talked about policy strategies to ameliorate problems with energy-water issues.  A discussion was held with the speakers and other participants mainly from the World Bank, government agencies, and natural resource societies.

The link between energy and water is crucial to the public health and safety, quality of life, and economic growth.  Water is needed for energy development and generation, as well as to treat drinking water and wastewater.  Through sophisticated modeling, the US has a handle on the important parameters that link water and energy throughout the US.  Although energy efficient practices have been advocated for years, local communities have had regulations than can limit the effect of these practices.  The serious drought in the western US is starting to have major consequences on food production, recreation, types of ground cover, ground water availability, and water distribution.  Of interest to SWST members would be that our forests are going to be more prone to fire and infestation, which could affect the timber removed from these forests.  Significant changes in our allocation of water resources will have to be made in many parts of our country to accommodate the diminished water availability.

Howard N. Rosen

SWST RNRF Representative



31 January 1929 ~ 15 April 2015 “The BobObit” On April 15, 2015, Robert William Erickson, age 86, died in the loving care of his family at Regions Hospital, St. Paul. Bob was born January 31, 1929 to Elmer Ferdinand Erickson and Ingaborg (Belle) Johanna Peterson and grew up on a farm in northern Minnesota, near St. Hilaire. He was preceded in death by his parents and siblings: Donald, Wallace, Joanne, Wayne, and Bruce. Survived by his former wife Enid Broderick and their children: Michael (Mary Kay), Maria (Daniel), Frank, Theresa, Claire (John), Elizabeth, Joanne, and Joseph; their grandchildren: Christopher (Kathleen), Agnes (Jonas), Annie, Ethan, Kristine (Eric), Brianna, and Abigail; and his beloved orange tabby, Samson. Bob raised his family in St. Anthony Park, and was an esteemed Professor Emeritus at the Department of Forest Resources, University of Minnesota. He earned his undergraduate degree and Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota in Forest Products and Research. Near the end of his career, he developed and patented the construction of a hollow wood pole (as an alternative to the commercial industry’s solid wood utility pole). The hollow pole was lightweight, decay resistant, and engineered for strength. Bob’s creativity followed in the steps of his Great-Uncle Johan Petter Johansson (1853-1943), a Swedish industrialist and inventor of the pipe wrench, the adjustable wrench, and more than 100 other patents. As a member of the J.P. Johansson-sällskapet, Bob was involved in commemorating his relative’s contributions. As a college professor, he traveled the world, visited every continent with the exception of Antarctica (no trees), was an apt student of language, and maintained strong ties to New Mexico. During the Korean War, Bob served in a United States Air Force search and rescue unit stationed on Okinawa. He was an avid fan of all types of sports, though he loved baseball the best, and in the 1950s played for the St. Louis Cardinals’ minor league. For over 40 years, he bowled in a University of Minnesota league now called “The Woodpickers.” Bob was a man of faith, hard work, integrity, good cheer, irrepressible sense of humor, and a lover of animals. He will be forever missed.


Saturday, Jun. 6, 2015

3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

University of Minnesota, St. Paul Student Center

2017 Buford Ave.,Cherrywood Room

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