Orville Hugh “Ollie” Olsson
TOGUS — Orville Hugh “Ollie” Olsson, 64, died Oct. 19, 2011, at VA Maine Healthcare System Togus hospice unit, after a very long, extended illness. He was born in Waterville on March 27, 1947, the son of the late Orville “Swede” and Mary “Mamie” (Canavan) Olsson.
Ollie worked for many years as an accountant and also owned Ollie’s Tavern in Augusta in the 1970s and Peter’s Little Big Store in the 1980’s. He was also a partner with his mother in Mamie Olsson’s Luncheonette and Olsson’s Catering Service. He retired at age 50 because of ill health from Agent Orange. At that time, his mother took ill, so he cared for her for the next six years. He was a devoted son to his mom and dad, and grandson to his “Gram,” Nina Canavan Patterson.
Ollie graduated from Waterville High School and had a bachelor of science degree in education from Thomas College. He served in the Marine Corps from 1966 to 1969, and was a combat sergeant in Dong Ha, Vietnam, 1968-1969, earning 11 ribbons and two meritorious masts. He was very proud of his service in the Marines and Vietnam.
Ollie served as the lone Republican councilman for the city of Waterville, 1985-1986 and was on the zoning board in the 1980s. Ollie was also a life member of the following organizations: Bourque-Lanigan Post 5, Waterville American Legion; VFW Post 1285 Waterville and 8835 Winslow; Disabled American Veterans; VFW Cooties; Third Marine Corp Division, 3rd Marine Corps (New England Chapter); Marine Corps League of Kennebec County; and the Waterville Elks 905. He also was a member of the American Legion for more than 40 years, and was a member of Kappa Delta Phi National Fraternity as well as the Parish of the Holy Spirit.
Ollie is survived by his beloved and devoted sister, whom he loved dearly, Joyce Olsson Pinkham, and her husband, Lloyd, of Brunswick and Venice, Fla.; his aunt and uncle, Robert “Spanky” and Marilyn Canavan; his three nieces, Ginger Goodwin of Sebago, Tammy O’Donnell and husband Doug of Cumberland, and Lori Bergeron and husband Mark of Saco; his great-nieces and nephews, Katie and husband Craig Twombly, Kerry and husband Greg Caron, Brenda O’Donnell, Olivia and Austin Goodwin, and Jacob, Holden and Nathaniel Bergeron.
Ollie also leaves behind good friends Ron Quirion, Dick Vashon, Gary Clukey, Joseph Bourgoin, Dan Berard and Brenda Bourassa, as well as many other close friends, and his love, his dog Angel.
He is happy now; he is with the Lord and the loves of his life, his mom and dad, his gram, and his pets, Moocher and Frisky.
His final wish was to be listed in the book at the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C., as a casualty of the Vietnam War because of illness caused by Agent Orange, which was not discovered until 1997.
Visiting hours will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2011, at Veilleux Funeral Home, 8 Elm St., Waterville. At 6 p.m., the American Legion will have a prayer service. A Mass of Christian burial will be held 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 26, at Notre Dame Church, Silver Street, Waterville. Burial with military honors will be at Maine Veterans’ Cemetery, Mount Vernon Road, Augusta, 1 p.m., Oct. 26. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Humane Society Waterville Area, 100 Webb Road, Waterville, ME 04901.
Published in Morning Sentinel on October 22, 2011