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Bangor, Brewer, Orono, Hampden, and surrounding communities

Walter Musson

Walter Edward Musson

Thursday, November 30th, 1950 - Friday, January 4th, 2019
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Obituary

NEWBURGH - Walter Edward Musson, known as the Slate Man, 68, passed away on January 4, 2019. He was born on November 30, 1950, the son of the late Edward and Doris (Monaghan) Musson.
Walter grew up in Great Pond, Maine, a little town of 46 people, “over east of Bangor” as he used to say. He attended a one room school house at the end of his driveway. He was one of six children in the school and the only one in his class all the way through the eighth grade so his teacher had him read the encyclopedia. Over the years he read through W. He spent summers waterskiing, boating, and fishing on Loon Island, the family island. He received his driver’s license at 14 so he could drive his sisters and himself to Brewer High School where he excelled academically and athletically. He loved sports and played on the 1968 Class-A State Championship Brewer Football team that won with an 11-0 season. Walter was offered admission to the United States Naval Academy, MIT, and Yale.
Walter found passion in his trade, working outside doing slate roofing, copper work, and building and repairing chimneys. His family taught him to reuse and salvage. This desire was reinforced in 1972, when he and a friend worked at a salvage lumberyard in the Netherlands. He saw that they wasted nothing, that they had reclaimed the land and that every bit of building material mattered.
Returning to Maine, he saw that many buildings were being torn down. It was then he began to salvage some of the used slate, brick, doors, and other building materials. He took down buildings and houses for a fee and as his slate inventory built up he taught himself how to repair roofs with recycled slate originally from quarries in Monson and Brownville. Walter had great affection for the old slate houses, libraries, and churches of Bangor and neighboring towns. His wife considers his work on the turreted People’s United Bank located on Bangor’s Main Street as his masterpiece. Walter was on the board of directors for the Leonard’s Mills Logging Museum in Bradley, another effort to preserve a past way of life. Many people liked Walter’s work ethic, friendliness, generosity, and Santa-like beard.
Walter is survived by his loving wife of 30 years, Ellen Pariser; sisters, Suzanne Irving and husband, Philip of Elgin, IL, Joanne Spencer of Belfast, ME, and Dianne Grant and husband, Robert of Ellsworth; and brother, Richard Musson of Clifton. He will be deeply missed by his six nieces and nephews. Walter was loved by the Pariser family as well. Special friends, Killian Pottle, and Skip Parent. He loved his cat, Rosie Piranha, and his bunnies, Tarzan and Jane.
The family invites relatives and friends to share in a memorial reception, 12-2 pm, Saturday, January 12, 2019 at the Family Reception Center of Brookings-Smith, 163 Center Street, Bangor. Those who wish to remember Walter in a special way may make gifts in his memory to the Bangor Humane Society, 639 Mount Hope Avenue, Bangor, or the Maine Forest and Logging Museum, P.O. Box 104, Bradley, ME 04411. Condolences to the family may be expressed at BrookingsSmith.com
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Service Details

  • Service

    Saturday, January 12th, 2019 | 12:00pm
    When
    Saturday, January 12th, 2019 12:00pm
    Location
    Family Reception Center of Brookings-Smith
    Address
    163 Center Street
    BANGOR, ME 04401
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Reception

    Saturday, January 12th, 2019 | 12:00pm - 2:00pm
    When
    Saturday, January 12th, 2019 12:00pm - 2:00pm
    Location
    Family Reception Center of Brookings-Smith
    Address
    163 Center Street
    BANGOR, ME 04401
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email

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Flowers
From the staff & crew of Horch Roofing sent flowers to the family of Walter Edward Musson.
Guaranteed hand delivery by a local florist
GW

Glenn Warner

Posted at 11:04pm
Brilliant and kind. In my heart Paul Bunyan is gone. I am so sorry Ellen.
RE

RW Estela

Posted at 10:04pm
In the 1980s, when the Bangor Post Office was in the Federal Building on Harlow Street, Walter and I had the first of the commiseration chats that would season our burgeoning acquaintance for the next couple of decades. He was there to retrieve his mail, same as I, pulling out envelopes, hoping to find at least one decent-sized check to offset all the accompanying bills – just two journeyman contractors rough around the edges and tired, but ready to offer each other a few moments of moral support in casual conversation nonetheless . . . We ran into each other probably several dozen times like that in the ‘80s and ‘90s and on into the new millennium. Occasionally, too, he’d see my old blue Chevy pickup with an extended ladder nearby at a local site and stop to say hi —or I would see his MrSlate vanity-plate truck parked somewhere in town, and I’d pull over to hear his latest complaints about OSHA . . . You were always sure to be a good visit, Walter, and as if, in any event, I wasn’t going to remember you warmly, you left us all to our own devices on my birthday. RIP, my friend. My deepest condolences as well to Walter’s family. RW Estela
SH

Skip Howard

Posted at 09:26am
Our condolences to Ellen and the Musson family for Walt's passing. Although we knew each other primarily through acquaintances with others, our paths crossed multiple times in our Hampden/Newburgh/Winterport neighborhood, most often at the convenience store at Kennebec Road & Rte. 69. I knew Walter to be a hard-working, highly intelligent and personable man, and that he loved Ellen deeply. With sympathy, Skip Howard and Theresa Hainer
RH

Ronald Harriman

Posted at 09:17am
Very sad to hear of Walt's passing. He was a unique and interesting person and I always enjoyed talking with him. He and I both had a long history renovating old Bangor buildings. We had connections with many of the same characters so there was always lots to talk about. His work was exquisite whether it was flashing, slate repair or rebuilding old chimneys, nobody could do it like he could. Walter's talent restored the grandeur of many old homes. I'll miss his talent but more than that I'll miss a good friend. Ron Harriman
FR

From the staff & crew of Horch Roofing

Posted at 03:17pm
Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss of Walter... Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
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From the staff & crew of Horch Roofing purchased the Dreams from the Heart Bouquet for the family of Walter Musson.

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