Walter  Oakes Jr.

Obituary of Walter "Eddie" Oakes Jr.

Milo, ME—Walter Edward “Eddie” Oakes Jr., 86, died December 20, 2023, after a brief illness, at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center, surrounded by family. He was born on May 17, 1937, in Milford, the eldest son of Walter Edward Oakes Sr. and Helen (Lancaster) Oakes. Eddie graduated from Old Town High School in 1955 and from the University of Maine in 1959. Eddie married his high school sweetheart, Nancy Dube, on April 18, 1959, and they were by one another’s side for 63 years before her passing May 2, 2022. Together they raised a loving family and formed a large community of friends while living in Milo these past sixty years. Eddie was a beloved son, brother, father, grandfather (Pepe) and great-grandfather. He was loved and will be missed by many people. Eddie taught school for 50 years; three at Danforth High School, six at Milo High School and forty-one years at Penquis Valley High School. He taught biology, health, hunters’ safety, and driver’s ed. He was a mentor, class adviser (organizing countless hunter breakfast fundraisers), and an avid Penquis sports fan. He had a quick wit and sense of humor, and wasn't afraid to use it. Many students saw him as a father figure, a man to look up to, and someone who’s presence taught right from wrong. Former students enjoyed teasing and joking with him when they saw him in the community and at class reunions. In 2010, Penquis Valley High School named the gymnasium the Walter Oakes, Jr. Gym in recognition of his many years of teaching, running the clock at basketball games (which he continued to do after retirement), and supporting students at extracurricular events; including attending every prom, concert, and graduation during his teaching career. In addition to his commitment to his family and school, he was a pillar of the Milo community and St. Francis/St. Paul Parish in Milo. Eddie and Nancy were the glue that held the faith family together in Milo. He was a 4th degree Knights of Columbus and held important roles in the Milo and state councils. Eddie was dearly loved by his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, friends, and students and will be deeply missed. Eddie is survived by his daughter, Janet Smith and her husband Jim of Industry; son, Don Oakes and his wife Valerie of Scarborough; daughter, Karen Thurston and her husband Glen of Rumford; daughter, Joanna Deetjen and her husband John of Newport; along with eight grandchildren: Matthew Oakes and his wife Morgan; Logan White; Jay Smith and his fiancé Johanna Heeren; Casey Oakes and his fiancé Tanay Belle; Ethan White; Shane Smith and his wife Sacha; Lauren Dighton and her husband Joe; and Christina Oakes; as well as four great grandchildren: Cameron White, Myles Dighton, Roni Oakes, and Lennon Smith; his brother James Oakes, sister Nancy Sullivan, sister Louise Keegan and husband Mark, brother Gene Oakes and wife Kathryn; his brother-in-law Wayne Therrien and his sister-in-law Anne Dubay. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 AM, Tuesday, January 16, 2024, at Holy Family Church, Old Town, with Fr. Robert Lupo as celebrant, and Fr. Emile Dube as homilist. The family invites relatives and friends to share memories and refreshments immediately after the service. In lieu of flowers the family asks for donations to be made to the Walter E Oakes Scholarship fund for Penquis Valley Graduates. Anyone wishing to contribute should please send donations to Janet Smith, P.O. Box 503, Farmington, Maine. A celebration of life will be held 2:00 PM Sunday, January 14, 2024, at the Walter E. Oakes Gymnasium, Penquis Valley High School, Milo. Arrangements are in the care of the Lary Funeral Home. Messages of condolence and memories may be expressed at

Celebration of Life

2:00 pm
Sunday, January 14, 2024
Walter Oakes Jr. Gymnasium
48 Penquis Drive
Milo, Maine, United States

Mass of Christian Burial

10:00 am
Tuesday, January 16, 2024
Holy Family Church
262 South Main Street
Old Town, Maine, United States
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