Phillip A. Cole ’54

Phillip A. Cole ’54 died on February 8, 2018, in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

(The following was published in the Portland Press Herald, February 18, 2018:)

Dr. Phillip A. Cole, 86, of Cape Elizabeth, passed away on February 8, 2018, following a long illness. He was born in Portland, on January 9, 1932, the son of Hiram S. Cole and Lyndell S. Bailey Cole of Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough.

He graduated from Fryeburg Academy, class of 1950, where he met his future wife, Charlotte Wentworth Clemons. They were married on September 10, 1952. He attended Bowdoin College for a year before transferring to Boston University where he received a B.S., M.A., and PhD. He then became a teaching fellow and instructor before going to USM to teach for fifty-six years.

“Dr. Cole was very involved in the emergence of USM with Gorham State Teachers College and contributed to University committees ranging from Curriculum Review and Personnel Recruitment to the Personnel Policies Committee. In this position he played a major role establishing structural, organizational, and instructional policies that are part of the University’s foundation today” (USM).

Dr. Cole coached the USM Tennis team for over forty years and was inducted into the USM Husky Hall of Fame in 2012. He became a professor emeritus of history when he retired from USM after fifty-six years of service, a longer period than any other professor in the University of Maine System.

Phil was an athlete, outdoorsman and loved spending time in the woods and fields – hiking and exploring with his family. He is predeceased by his brother, Wallace B. Cole. Phil leaves behind his wife Charlotte of sixty-five years; his daughters, Dulcie Hayes and her husband, Timothy Hayes of Scarborough, Penny Skillin and her husband George Skillin of Kennebunk, and son, Dr. Bert Cole of North Hampton, NH; nine grandchildren, Chris, Brad, Phil, Jennie, Sarah, Nat, Ben, Rachel, and Rebecca; and a brother-in-law, Hubert Clemons.

Special thanks go to the caring staff of South Portland Nursing Home.

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