Tag Archives: Miltary Wives

Transition to Maine~Part 3

24 Aug


Judy Wills



In addition to setting up house at Loring AFB, we started looking for a church home. There weren’t very many Southern Baptist Churches in that area – actually only one – so we scoped it out. They didn’t have their own building, and were meeting in the Odd Fellows hall in Caribou. It wasn’t ideal, especially on the Sundays after the Odd Fellows had been having a party on Saturday night with beer flowing freely. We frequently had to clean up the hall before we could hold our services on Sunday. (Fred and I were only in Maine for 13 months, and after we left, the church rented space on Sundays from the Knights of Columbus. Several years after that, they built their own building). However, the church was strong and the fellowship was tremendous. One of the best things we found in the churches we were in that had a large military membership – the rank came off when we walked through the door. We were all just fellow believers in Christ. We met many people there who became good friends, and some we’ve even retained contact with throughout the years. We’ve also had the pleasure of meeting up with them when they have come down to Orlando for their time at Disney. That’s such a joy!




The Weather Detachment that Fred was assigned to was a fairly cohesive group, as well. He started in working right away. Loring AFB was a first-defense base with bombers, aerial refueling and interceptor aircraft stationed there. One section of the base was on constant alert. Loring was the closest U.S. base to Europe and U.S.S.R.

Loring AFB was named in 1954 posthumously for Major Charles J. Loring, Jr., USAF, a Medal of Honor recipient during the Korean War. During the morning of 22 November 1952, he led a flight of F-80 Shooting Stars on patrol over Kunwha. After beginning a dive bombing run and getting hit, he entered into a controlled dive and destroyed a Chinese gun emplacement on Sniper Ridge which was harassing United Nations troops, by deliberately crashing his aircraft into the emplacement.


Public schools in Aroostock County started in August. They were in session for three weeks then broke for two or three weeks for the potato harvest. Local farmers hired students and airmen looking for some extra money to help with the harvest. Then school resumed.

There was only pre-kindergarten through elementary grades on base – other grades/schools are in town. Karen was able to attend a part-time pre-k there. She got to ride a bus to school and was thrilled. Unfortunately, Fred and I were in tears to see her go!

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