Former town official is remembered
LYNDEBOROUGH – A few years ago, Lee Mayhew saw a need and came out of retirement to lend the town a hand in any way he could, including serving as a selectman.
Mayhew, 75, died Tuesday, July 25, at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center after a lingering illness.
“Lee was involved in all aspects of town government,” Town Administrator Russ Boland said.
That included the reconstruction of Mountain Road, improving the handicapped parking area behind Citizens’ Hall, improving the boat launch at Putnam Pond, upgrading all of the municipal buildings, developing a new budget system, clarifying the employee handbook and insisting the flag on the Village Common be lighted properly.
“I will miss Lee’s experience, wisdom and his caring way of mentoring,” Boland said.
Mayhew was a graduate of Saint Anselm College. During the Vietnam War, he served as a helicopter pilot with the 1st Cavalry Division. On leaving the military as a captain, he continued in civil service.
He was Milford’s first town administrator, a post he held for 18 years.
“I had been working for the
selectmen for quite a while when they hired Lee,” Lorraine Carson said. “And I didn’t know what to do with him.”
But Mayhew was “a fast learner,” she said. She called him “very honest and diplomatic, very fair and very willing to listen, and easy to talk to. He made an excellent first administrator, and he got very knowledgeable.”
Mayhew was one of those unusual people, she said, “who could be your boss and still be your friend. I thought he was a great guy. I liked him a lot, and was devastated when I heard he had died.”
But Mayhew did more than just hold office.
“Lee was always willing to roll up his sleeves and jump right in wherever he was needed to make his adopted home town better,” said Walter Holland, his close friend and the town moderator. “He encouraged a lot of people around him to perform at their best and make their community a beautiful and welcoming place.
“It was Lee who urged me to decorate the meeting room at Citizens’ Hall with pictures and memorabilia that had been hidden in closets for too long. I was honored and privileged to call him a friend.”
Mayhew was a supporter of anyone who wanted to make a difference, such as offering his support to Eagle Scout Ian Holden in his desire to make a park behind the town offices.
Mayhew is survived by Theresa, his wife of 52 years, four children, 12 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
Burial with military honors was Tuesday, Aug. 1, at Mount Calvary Cemetery in Wilton.
Smith and Heald Funeral Home in Milford was in charge of the arrangements.