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Carl M. Ilvonen

July 10, 1925 – October 14, 2018

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Carl Ilvonen
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"We are honored to provide this Book of Memories to the family."
— Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home

Obituary for Carl M. Ilvonen

SOUTH THOMASTON – Carl M. Ilvonen, 93, died peacefully at home, surrounded by his loving family, Sunday, October 14, 2018.

Born in Rockland, July 10, 1925, he was the son of Uno and Hilma Hill Ilvonen. Educated locally, he attended Ash Point School and later Rockland High School. After high school, Carl married Thelma Thomas and together they had two daughters, Ruth and Rebecca. Later he adopted Thelma’s son, Kenneth.
Joining the U.S. Navy during World War II, Carl served as head of the Gunnery Crew aboard a Liberty Ship. Upon being honorably discharged, Carl moved home to Owls Head, to the family farm with his two daughters. While at the farm, he started a road construction business and worked on roads in Maine and throughout New England. In 1947 he met Elsie Rackliff, whom he had met while stopping in for a cup of hot coffee at the Rackliff house, while out plowing snow. The pair were married, and blending their families they later welcomed four more children.

Carl traded in his trucks and heavy equipment for a life on the water in 1964. With Elsie as his sternman, he fished the waters off South Thomaston until he was 91 years old. With the help of his grandson, he was able to remain on the boat living his dream, before hanging up his oils skins in 2016. An innovator in the lobster industry, he pioneered many methods that are standards today. His daughter remembers he was one of the first to use wire traps, a hydraulic hauler, and he designed the crank bait box. Carl was also a mentor to many young fisherman coming up in the community. The South Thomaston community was an important part of Carl’s life and together with his neighbors, he began what is now the South Thomaston Volunteer Fire Department. He was also an active member of the South Thomaston Masonic Lodge.

Carl was an avid motorcycle enthusiast. Along with his wife Elsie, Carl was a charter member of the Harley Owners Group. As members of the Central Maine Harley H.O.G. Chapter, he took great joy in hosting an annual rally at his home with a lobster feed and up to 150 bikes. They were also members of the Dresser Association. Another favorite pastime was attending the Annual Atlantic Regional Rallies in the Maritime Provinces of Canada. Carl remained active member of the motorcycle community, riding until he was 83 years old.
An avid outdoorsmen he enjoyed hunting, with his wife, family and friends. They enjoyed spending Thanksgiving at their hunting camp each year with their family. During the winter months, Carl loved riding his snowmobile with his wife and large groups of friends, riding for hundreds of miles, all over the State of Maine. He stopped riding in 2007 when his wife passed away.

Later, Carl found love again, when he met Maxine Stanley. The two have been constant companions until his passing. He will be sadly missed by all who loved him.

Predeceased by his wife Elsie in 2007; an infant son Carl; a daughter Ruth Molloy; his adopted son Kenneth; a brother Uno Ilvonen, and a sister Barbara Lindquist; Carl is survived by his beloved companion Maxine Stanley of Rockport; his daughters, Frances Loring and her husband Frank Booker of Bangor, Rebecca ‘Becky’ Rheaume and her husband Larry of Buxton, Marie Ilvonen of South Thomaston, Audrey McClure and her husband Charlie of South Thomaston, Mary Beth Nolette and her husband Roland of Biddeford; a son Mark Ilvonen and his husband Bill Faulkner of San Francisco, CA; his brothers, Richard Ilvonen, Kenneth Ilvonen and his wife Kathy all of Owls Head; his sisters, Mary Orne of Rockland, Elsa MacFarland of Dallas, TX; 13 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren; as well as many nieces, nephews, and a large loving extended family.

A celebration of Carl’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, October 27, 2018 at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock Street, Rockland. A reception will follow immediately at 104 Limerock.

Flowers are gratefully accepted, however those who wish, may make memorial donations to the Carl Ilvonen Scholarship Find, c/o Sue Snow, Oceanside High School, 400 Broadway, Rockland, Maine 04841.

Memorial Service Information

Saturday, October 27th, 2018 11:00am
Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home
110 Limerock Street
Rockland, ME 04841

Reception Information

Saturday, October 27th, 2018 12:00pm - 2:00pm
104 Limerock Reception Center
104 Limerock Street
Rockland, ME 04841