LEVERETT - Herschel G. Abbott, 92, died Saturday, March 1, 2014, at his home in Leverett.
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He was born May 4, 1921, in Woodstock, Maine, the son of George and Elva Abbott. He continued to maintain his connection to his roots in Maine, throughout his lifetime.
Herschel was predeceased by his wife of 60 years, Beth (Kennedy) Abbott.
Herschel was a junior at the University of Maine when Pearl Harbor was attacked. He immediately enlisted in the United States Navy V7 Program. Upon graduation in 1943, he reported for service and one day after receiving his commission, he married Beth Kennedy. He served three years of active duty and 24 years in the Naval Reserve.
After his active service in the Navy, he continued his education and obtained his master's degrees in biology and forestry from Harvard University. He joined the faculty of the University of Massachusetts in 1953, and remained there for 33 years.
He was the recipient of numerous awards for his contributions to the forestry profession. Herschel was admired by his students and pushed them hard to learn about the diverse forests that dominate the New England landscape. He was particularly fond of, as well as adept at, managing white pine stands and identifying wildflowers and unusual flora. Even during a short walk in the woods Herschel would invariably provide a wealth of knowledge to his companions.
In the late 1980's, he was instrumental in establishing and funding several scholarship funds at the University of Massachusetts including The Herschel G. Abbott Award for Forestry. Herschel also practiced what he preached. With his friend and colleague J. Harry Rich, he acquired and managed several woodlots including the property now known as the J. Harry Rich State Forest in Groton.
Herschel enjoyed antiquing with a special interest in Currier and Ives prints. He was also an avid hunter and cherished fishing for native brook trout in small New England streams.
There will be a private burial in Woodstock, Maine.
Obituary and memorial register at www.douglassfuneral.com.
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Douglass Funeral Home
87 North Pleasant Street
Amherst, MA 01002
Published in Daily Hampshire Gazette on Mar. 6, 2014