Manchester – Lewis Bernard Basquil, 92, died August 22, 2010 at his daughter’s home surrounded by his family.
He was born in Manchester on April 21, 1918, to James Basquil and Nora (Kelley) Basquil. He graduated class salutatorian from St. Joseph’s High School in 1935, from St. Anselm College in 1940, and completed graduate studies at Boston University (Masters and CAGS) in 1969. He worked as part of the Civilian Conservation Corps from 1935 to 1936. In 1942 he joined the US Army Corps and served as a Sergeant in the 29th Infantry Division, 121st Combat Engineers. As part of the D-Day Invasion, he landed as a member of the 116th Regimental Combat Team – 1st Division on Omaha Beach at Vierville-sur-Mer, Normandy. He was awarded the Bronze Star for bravery.
He returned to Manchester after the war and in 1947 married Mary Ange “Beatrice” Tessier. From 1947 to 1948 he worked for the State Welfare Department. In 1949 he joined the Manchester School Department where he worked as a classroom teacher, physical education instructor and finally as the Director of Physical Education until he retired in 1983.
Throughout his life, Lewis was an avid sportsman. In addition to his own success as a young man in basketball, football and baseball, he went on to develop many of Manchester’s youth sports leagues. In 1952, Lewis was one of the leading founders and organizers of the Manchester Babe Ruth League and served as the director for ten years. During the mid-1960’s he organized and directed the City Park League (a Sunset League equivalent) as well as the city track and swim meets. In the 1980’s he served as an official for Title IX, helping to obtain additional resources for girls’ sports, and was bestowed with several awards and sporting events named in his honor.
His dedication to sports in the City of Manchester was recognized by his inductions into the Queen City Athletic Hall of Fame and the Manchester Catholic High School Athletic Hall of Fame. His dedication to education was also recognized in many ways including his long-standing service as Official of the Annual Elks-Union Leader State Spelling Bee.
Lewis was a lifetime member of Sweeney Post American Legion, Raphael Club and Manchester Lodge of Elks. To say he loved the game of golf is an understatement, it was his passion. After retirement, Lewis could be found playing 18 holes still at the age of 90. He was a member of Derryfield Country Club for over sixty years.
He was a communicant of St. Raphael Church.
He is survived by his four children, daughter Patricia Gocklin and husband David, of Manchester; daughter Bernadine “Bernie” Maloney and husband, Gary of Encinitas, CA; son James “Jim” Basquil of Manchester and his companion, Doris St. Pierre; daughter Kathleen “Kathy” Basquil and husband Alan Udin of San Diego, CA; grandchildren, Kathleen Goldlust, Colleen O’Rourke, Meghan O’Rourke, Timothy Gocklin, Patrick Gocklin, Evan Maloney, Allison Maloney, Nora Kate Maloney, Melanie Udin, Zachary Udin; three great-grandchildren; brother Edward Basquill and wife Noreen of Bedford; and several nieces and nephews.
Calling hours are Wednesday from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. at Durning, Bykowski & Young Funeral Home, 285 Manchester St., corner of Beech St.
The funeral liturgy will be celebrated Thursday at 10 a.m. at St. Raphael Church, 103 Walker St. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery, Bedford.
Memorial contributions may be made to The Manchester Boys and Girls Club, 555 Union St., Manchester, NH 03104, VNA Hospice, 33 S. Commercial St. Suite 401, Manchester, NH 03101, or Norris Cotton Cancer Center, 87 McGregor St., Manchester, NH 03102.