Eight Bells

The practice of using bells stems from the days of the sailing ships. Sailors couldn't afford to have their own time pieces and relied on the ship's bells to tell time. The ship's boy kept time by using a half-hour glass. Each time the sand ran out, he would turn the glass over and ring the appropriate number of bells. Each ship “watch” is four hours, or eight bells, in length.

The tradition of Eight Bells pays respect to deceased mariners and signifies that a sailor's “watch” is over.

Submissions for Eight Bells

If you learn of the passing of a MMA classmate, associate, friend or family member, please contact the Office of Alumni Relations so that we may include the information in our Eight Bells listings. Send obituaries or their digital links to alumni@mma.edu.

  • Richard L. Renner ’56

    Deceased date: October 9, 2017
    Richard Lee Renner, 82, of 510 East Water St., Smethport, passed away Monday, Oct. 9, 2017 at his residence.
    Born in Bainbridge, N.Y., on Aug. 8, 1935, he was a son of the late Allen and Dorothy Dick Renner. Mr.…read more
  • Peter H. O’Meara ’69

    Deceased date: September 27, 2017
    Peter H. O'Meara passed away September 27, 2017, at his home with his family by his side. He was born December 17, 1946 in Bayreuth, Germany, the son of David and Lieselotte O'Meara. He graduated from Maine Maritime Academy in 1969 with a Bachelor's De…read more
  • Lester R. Smallidge ’57

    Deceased date: September 24, 2017
    Lester Ralph Smallidge, 81, passed away peacefully at home on Sunday evening, Sept. 24, 2017, surrounded by his family. Lester was born in Somesville on Feb. 17, 1936, to Lewis and Mazie (Brown) Smallidge. Lester grew up on Mount Desert Island with his si…read more
  • John L. Dorr ’71

    Deceased date: September 22, 2017
    John LeRoy Dorr, 68, of Boothbay, Maine lost his courageous battle with cancer on Sept. 22 at Mid Coast Hospital. He was the son of the late Earl W. Dorr Jr. and Sally F. Hamilton. John retired in January and was able to fulfill his dream of returning …read more
  • Mr. Robert J. McKenna ’77

    Deceased date: September 19, 2017
    Robert "Bob" McKenna, age 63, formerly of Cape Elizabeth, passed away peacefully in his sleep Tuesday, September 19, 2017. Bob loved his family, friends and all he encountered in life and we were blessed to learn many valuable lessons from him, among them…read more
  • Phillip L. Chaples ’53

    Deceased date: September 16, 2017
    Phillip Lloyd Chaples, 85, was born in Milo, Maine. He is a graduate of the Maine Maritime Academy. Phillip retired from the U.S. Army Transportation Corps at Ft. Dix, NJ as a Major with 22 years of service. He is survived by his two sisters, Joanne Essa…read more
  • Capt. George L. Allen ’78

    Deceased date: September 10, 2017
    Capt. George L. Allen was born in Hays, Kansas on October 22, 1952 and died in Panama City, Panama on September 10, 2017. Captain Allen received his Bachelor of Science in Nautical Science in 1978, and his Masters of Science in Maritime Management from…read more
  • Brian G. Ayer ’66

    Deceased date: August 30, 2017
    SOUTH CHINA, MAINE - Brian G. Ayer, 73, passed away Aug. 30, 2017 at Maine General Medical Center in Augusta surrounded by his family. He was born Feb. 14, 1944 in Waterville, the son of Charles D. and Martha (Greenleaf) Ayer. He graduated from Hampden…read more
  • George A. Varney ’72

    Deceased date: August 23, 2017
    George A. Varney, 51, longtime GMC Service Manager/ Director, who received several recognitions for his willingness to go above and beyond, died Monday, November 19th, at his home here after a long illness. In 1982, he took the position of Service Manager…read more
  • James T. Walsh ’64

    Deceased date: August 15, 2017
    James “Terry” Walsh, 76, of Derry, NH, died Tuesday August 15, 2017 in Merrimack Valley Hospice House in Haverhill, MA. He was born in Bangor, ME on June 30, 1941, the son of Norman and Rita (Connor) Walsh, and had been a resident of Derry since 1986.…read more