Edward Orin Perry

Edward, Perry.jpg

Edward Orin Perry
May 1, 1947

Edward Orin Perry was born May 1, 1947 to Orin Francis Perry III and Ruth Farman Perry. He grew up in Dobbs Ferry, NY, summering with grandparents in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.

An idealistic young man majoring in art, he was the third generation to attend the University of Maine at Orono. He later attended grad school at SUNY, New Paltz, majoring in painting where he also learned to weld and developed a love for sculpture. After grad school, he taught elementary art in Cape Vincent, NY for 4 years before returning to Maine and teaching at Reiche in Portland for 30 years. He obtained a Master’s in Education from USM as well as a Captain’s license from the Coast Guard.

Edward had many interests and two careers. While teaching, he grew his lobster fishing business purchasing many boats all renamed Rachel or Rachel M. He and Rachel met at Reiche School. He shared his love for bluegrass music by taking Rachel to a Bill Monroe bluegrass concert for their first date in 1977. They fell in love and married in 1980. Edward did play a five-string banjo and later created a collection of toy trucks and motorcycles.

Edward loved the open-air freedom of motorcycle riding. He rode his R75/5 across the continent with his childhood friend, Ray McKenna, and twice again to the Southwest and Great Plains with his wife Rachel. He also rode his bike throughout the Maritimes. He founded the BMW Riders of Southern Maine in the 1980s. He was rally boss for the Downeast Rally during the early years of that club from Wolfe’s Neck, to Appleton, to Hermit Island. He rode tens of thousands of miles to meet other bike enthusiasts at their rallies around North America. He sought out rare American treasures in the form of small town settings and rustic oddities. With profound insights, Edward often shared the adventures of the rode or any moment of grace or beauty he experienced in his soft spoken and gentle manner.

There was always a bike, truck, JD tractor on the work stand as Edward juggled may restoration projects at once. While adding modifications, learning a bike’s history—the factories, coinciding world events, the plight of those who cared for this bike before him—was important to Edward. He also built a custom truck based on a 1968 F350. He gas welded the entire chassis, cab and bed and painted it fire engine red.

Edward was born to a family of storied American history and maritime lore originally settling in Berwick and North Haven. He passed along to his children his love of the sea, sailing with them and his father Downeast, and teaching them how to lobster fish. He fulfilled his boyhood dream of lobstering on a the coast of Maine and did so first in a slow wooden Jonesport boat out of Portland Harbor and then, with many boat upgrades, off Cape Elizabeth for 36 years. He shared his knowledge, helped and encouraged his sons in their marine endeavors. Both his sons will remember him as the strongest and hardest working man they knew who never failed to point out beauty—such as the view from The Tow on a clear day of Mt Washington. He gave everything for his family and those he cared about.

Edward raised two sons, Nathaniel and Benjamin.  He was involved in scouting, a hockey parent, and a music enthusiast. He loved deeply his grandson Weston who inherited his obsession for trucks, tractors and boats.

Edward never missed an opportunity to create metal sculptures for Rachel’s beautiful and seemingly endless gardens. For 40 years, his wife Rachel was always by his side and comforted him as he passed on the morning of June 19, 2021.

A celebration of life honoring his memory will occur at his home 10 Pine Ridge Road, Cape Elizabeth, July 24, 1-4. Raindate July 25. Friends and families members are welcome to bring photos of Edward to share.

Online condolences may be expressed below.

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