BAR HARBOR — A scholarship fund for Mount Desert Island High School graduates is being established by Victoria Murphy in memory of Bill Blanchard, who worked for Murphy and her late husband, James, as property manager at their seasonal residence in Seal Harbor.
The fund will provide $1,000 annual scholarships for students who attend technical schools to study auto mechanics, electrical engineering, plumbing, carpentry, horticulture or arboriculture.
Blanchard, who died in April at age 72, was a life-long resident of Mount Desert Island. He worked for more than 20 years as a mechanic at Haynes Garage in Northeast Harbor and then for several years as a long-haul truck driver.
Blanchard worked for the Murphys for 23 years. Victoria Murphy said she and her husband always thought of him as part of their family.
“I wanted to do something in the way of a memorial because he was such an extraordinary person,” she said of her reason for establishing the scholarship fund.
“He was a superb mechanic; he could fix anything,” she said. “He was also very funny. He told great jokes.”
Technical school scholarships will be available to MDI High graduates starting with the class of 2016.
Murphy said some of Blanchard’s family and friends have contributed to the scholarship fund, and other contributions are welcome. Checks made out to the Bill Blanchard Scholarship Fund may be sent to Mary Wallace, MDI High School, P.O. Box 180, Mount Desert, ME 04660.