The Daily Me


GREENVILLE - Richard B. Folsom, one of the oldest surviving truly Maine bush pilots, died on the way to his favorite daughter's house, April 11, 2002. He was born in Greenville, Dec. 30, 1918, the son of Malcolm L. and Madeline Brett Folsom. Dick graduated in the first class to graduate from the new Oakes School in Greenville. After high school, he worked for Fred Sawyer on the mail boat on Moosehead Lake. He later went to Spartan Aircraft School in Tulsa, Okla. He learned mechanics working for Pratt & Whitney in 1940-1941. He first soloed in 1941 and received his private pilots license after World War II. In 1942, he joined the Army Air Corps. as a mechanic, serving in the Pacific. In 1946, along with Charles Sawyer and Stanley Wilt, Folsom bought his first plane and shortly thereafter, started Folsom's Air Service. Over the years, he and his pilots flew hunters, fishermen and vacationers into the wilderness, along with delivering supplies to sporting camps and woods camps. Dick and his pilots were known to carry anything that could be loaded or tied onto a plane including refrigerators, stoves, canoes, and lumber. In 1964, Dick and Charlie Coe started providing water-bombing services using Folsom's DeHaviland Beaver for the State Forestry Department. Dick retired in 1982 and worked as a consultant with his son, Max, until his death. Dick enjoyed work, friends, and family. He enjoyed meals at Wilson Pond Restaurant, during the summer months. He put extra miles on his Intrepid this winter, traveling to Beaver Cove to advise the "Brat" on his Cessna 206 project. Evenings, Dick could be found on the phone, keeping Linda "in-the-know" on the goings-on in Greenville. He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

He is survived by his brother, Max Folsom of Greenville; sister and brother-in-law, Fred and Mary McInnis of Orono; and longtime friend and companion, Nancy Soule of Concord. In addition, he is survived by his children, Hugh and Linda McEachern, Max and Judy Folsom, Rodney and Vanessa Folsom, all of Greenville, Willis and Ellen Lakeman of Medway, Fred and Ann Hansen, James and Diane Folsom, Helen Smeaton, and Roscoe Schroeder, all of Dillingham, Alaska He is survived by 19 grandchildren, one great-granddaughter, several nieces, and the world's smartest cat, Scamp.

There will be a party, at Max and Judy's, to celebrate Dick's life, 2 p.m. Sunday, April 14. We wish to invite Dick's close friends to attend, share memories, and have a good time. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Charles A. Dean Hospital, P.O. Box 1129, Greenville, ME 04441; Moosehead Marine Museum, P.O. Box 1151, Greenville, ME 04441; or Greenville High School, P.O. Box 100, Greenville, ME 04441. "He is ever giving advice to Max and Max is ever thinking of his own way of doing things."

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