BRIDGEWATER – Merle R. Williamson, 83, devoted husband and loving father, passed away peacefully Thursday, Jan. 31, 2008, at Aroostook Health Center, Mars Hill, after a long and courageous battle with COPD. Merle was born Dec. 12, 1924, in Monticello, the son of Frank and Nina (Jewell) Williamson. He attended Monticello and Mars Hill schools. He went to the service during World War II at the age of 18. He served in the European Theatre and was honorably discharged in 1945. After his discharge, he came back to Monticello and farmed with his father for several years. Merle was a salesman working for the Pepsi Cola Co. for 15 years and the Humpty Dumpty Potato Chip Co. for 17 years. He also worked for four years as a deputy sheriff in Houlton. After his retirement, he drove the Aroostook Health Care van transporting patients to medical appointments for 10 plus years. A faithful member of Free Baptist Church, Bridgewater, for 40 plus years, serving as a deacon and Sunday school teacher. He is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, Laverna (Bulley) Williamson; his devoted son, Rodney M. Williamson, both of Bridgewater; his brother, Vaughn Williamson and his wife, Kay, of New Hampshire; a sister, Pat Tuba and her husband, Al, of Connecticut; sisters-in-law, June Weeks of Pennsylvania and Maxine Williamson of Houlton; several nieces and nephews, including special nieces, Annette Arribas of Pennsylvania and Carolyn Malardo of Connecticut. Predeceasing him were brothers, Lloyd, Arthur and Clair Williamson; and a sister, Freda Hartley. Funeral services will be conducted 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Free Baptist Church, Bridgewater, with Pastor Lawrence Beals officiating. Relatives and friends may call 1:30 until the time of the service at the church. Special thanks to the staff at Aroostook Health Care Center and Dr. David Jones for the loving care he received there. Gifts in his memory may be made to the Free Baptist Church, P.O. Box 280, Bridgewater, ME 04735 or to Aroostook Health Care Center Activities Fund, P.O. Box 410, Mars Hill, ME 04758.