DEDHAM - Robert “Bob” G. Croce, 76, died unexpectedly on June 10, 2019 at a Bangor hospital. He was born February 19, 1943 in Lawrence, Massachusetts, the son of Carl and Charlotte Croce.
Bob graduated from Lawrence Academy in Groton, Massachusetts, Class of 1961, then went on to college at the University of Vermont to earn a BA in psychology. He moved to Maine to attend the University of Maine (Orono) where he attained a Doctorate in Education. Bob worked in the mental health field as a therapist and program director for 24 years, both in Bangor and in the Mid-coast region. In 1994, Bob and his wife, Jill, purchased Spencer Pond Camps and operated the business for 15 years, making many new friends and helping their guests nourish their connections with nature by sharing their knowledge of the natural world and of the Moosehead Lake region in particular.
Bob worked tirelessly on the causes he believed in – always issues involving the preservation of our natural resources and most recently on election reform. He contributed his time and efforts to several organizations including the Maine Sporting Camps Association, the Izaak Walton League, the Dedham Volunteer Fire and Rescue team, Maine Natural Resources Council, the Veazie Salmon Club, and the Curran Homestead Living History Museum where he gave demonstrations on ice-fishing and maple syrup making.
Bob will be remembered by many as a nonconformist with a variety of interests and passions. He was not afraid to try new things and, as a result, had many diverse experiences that shaped him throughout his life while always staying true to his thoughtful, resourceful, independent, and occasionally curmudgeonly core. He was devoted to his family and loved spending time with his grandchildren. His annual fly-fishing trips to his favorite river with his friends Alan and Mick are considered legendary.
Bob is survived by his wife, Jill Martel, of Dedham; sons, Andrew Croce and his wife, Rebecca of Bangor, Ethan Croce and his wife, Sarah of Portland; brother, Carl Croce and his wife, Janet; and grandchildren, Chloe, Oscar, Willow, and Tessa. He is survived also by the mother of his sons and former wife, Suzanne Croce.
A memorial service will be held at 1pm Monday, June 24, 2019 at Brookings-Smith, 133 Center Street, Bangor. Bob’s family invites relatives and friends to share conversation and refreshments at the Family Reception Center of Brookings-Smith, 163 Center St., following the service. Those who wish to remember Bob in a special way may make gifts in his memory to the Curran Homestead, PO Box 107, Orrington 04474, or to the Atlantic Salmon Federation (to conserve and restore Atlantic Salmon and their ecosystems) online at www.asf.ca or PO Box 807, Calais, ME 04619. Condolences to the family may be expressed at BrookingsSmith.com