William Dickenson Shew Jr., 85, of South Bristol, passed away March 18.
“Dick” Shew, the son of the late William and Lois Shew and loving husband of Ellen Shew for 57 years, was born Nov. 29, 1933.
He is survived by his wife Ellen; his daughter, Elizabeth Shew; son-in-law, Timothy Cummings; son, Richard Shew; sister, Nancy Sloane; brother, William Phillip Shew; grandson, William Cummings; and granddaughter, Margaret Cummings.
Mr. Shew was an Army veteran and received an associate degree in mechanical engineering from Mitchell College in New London, Conn.
Beginning with his employment by Seth Persson Boat Builders in Old Saybrook, Conn., and Electric Boat Company in Groton, Conn., Mr. Shew spent most of his adult life constructing wooden boats for both commercial and recreational use. By the early 1960s he had moved to Maine, working first at Gamage Shipyard in South Bristol and then Goudy and Stevens Shipyard and Fuller Shipbuilding in East Boothbay. In 1968 Mr. Shew and his business partner Cecil Burnham started Shew and Burnham Inc. in South Bristol where they constructed more than 200 small traditional wooden boats. Many of these boats were designed by Mr. Shew and were featured in national publications including Wooden Boat and Nautical Quarterly.
Mr. Shew had a wide range of recreational interests including competitive rowing, sailing, photography, collecting firearms and animal husbandry. He established a commercial goat dairy in the 1970s, Christmas Cove Farms, which the Shew family operated for just over six years.
Mr. Shew was active in the civic affairs of South Bristol. He served on the town’s school board, planning board and later served as the town’s harbor master for 16 years.
A celebration of his life will be held in June at a private function at the Shew residence. Donations may be made to the Rutherford Library in South Bristol in lieu of flowers.