The Daily Me


DEXTER- Robert Lee Berner, 92, died of congestive heart failure, December 22, 2008, at Mayo Regional Hospital in Dover-Foxcroft. He was born July 25, 1916, in Everett, WA, son of Heinrich and Lillian (Morrow) Berner.

Robert Lee BernerLee joined the US Navy in 1936, and in 1937 he was serving on the USS Detroit at the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge. He served on destroyers, submarines, cruisers, and minesweepers. He was on convoy duty in the North Atlantic for Lend Lease shipment during WWII, and in November of 1942 he was transferred to duty covering the landings in North Africa. He later served in both Korea and Vietnam. In 1957 he retired with the rank of Chief Quarter Master. After retirement he joined the US Corp of Engineers as a navigator. In 1960 he joined the Military Sealift Command, serving on missile tracking ships for Cape Canaveral. In 1970 MSC named him Marine Employee of the Year, for saving a life at sea.

Robert was a member of the First Universalist Church of Dexter; Dexter Sunrise Kiwanis; Anah Temple Shrine in Bangor; a 32 degree Mason with membership in Penobscot Masonic Lodge in Dexter.

He was predeceased by his wife, Eleanor (Small) Berner; a brother, Heinrich Paul Berner; and a son-in-law, Alexander E. Waller Jr.

He is survived by a daughter, Rosemary Waller of Dexter; a son, William R. Berner and his wife, Susan of Rockledge, Florida; 4 grandchildren, Scott, and Christopher Berner, Lindsay Waller and Victoria Waller Sovetsky; 3 great grandchildren, Annika, Alexander and Kayley; a brother, Richard C. Berner and his wife, Thelma of Seattle, Washington; nieces, nephews and cousins.

Memorial services will be held in the summer of 2009, with burial in the Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Dexter. Arrangements by Crosby & Neal, Dexter. For an online guest register, go to

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