Mount Desert (Somesville)
Gerard “Gerry” Orazio Fournier, 68, died peacefully Sept. 17, 2022, surrounded by his family after a courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Gerry was born Aug. 15, 1954, in Lewiston, ME, the oldest child of Chesley and Theresa Fournier.
By all accounts he was a bright, artistic, and thoughtful kid who established himself in school as a hard worker and high achiever. He excelled in nearly everything he set his mind to— except for sports—and graduated valedictorian of Lewiston High School’s Class of 1972.
That fall Gerry entered Georgetown University, which proved life changing. At the very first freshman mixer he met the love of his life, Maureen Robbins, the “curly red-haired girl from New Jersey.” She thought he looked like Cat Stevens. And that was that. They were inseparable, graduating in May 1976, and marrying one week after Commencement.
The young couple started a family in New Jersey while Gerry attended Seton Hall Law School. After graduation in 1980, Gerry was commissioned as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and spent three years on active duty as a military trial attorney at the naval base in Newport, RI.
Following his military service, Gerry was admitted to the Maine Bar and began his legal career at Pierce Atwood LLP in Augusta, settling with his family in Gardiner. He later joined the firm of Isaacson & Raymond in Lewiston and was further admitted to the Bar of both New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
The bulk of Gerry’s trial work focused on personal injury, professional malpractice, products liability, labor, and worker’s compensation cases in both state and federal courts. In 1998, Gerry opened the Law Office of Gerard O. Fournier, which was the Maine litigation office for Hanover Insurance. He remained a proud member of the Maine and American Trial Lawyers Association and was a contributing editor for “Maine Trial Practice.” He retired from the practice of Richardson, Whitman, Large & Badger in Bangor in 2017.
All who worked with Gerry knew him to be a man of integrity, unassuming genius, generosity, and fair play. Though he wouldn’t want you to know it, he was named Boss of the Year by his staff; he was hailed as a “lawyer’s lawyer” by his colleagues. He often received thank you cards from clients and congratulatory notes from opposing counsel. Maureen nicknamed him Atticus Finch for his keen sense of right and wrong and the quiet compassion that extended to everyone he met.
At home, he was just Dad, the best there ever was. Unique. He hemmed pants, crafted elaborate Halloween costumes and jack-o’-lanterns, painted beautiful watercolors, made sure he was on sidelines and at parent-teacher conferences, helped build school projects and Pinewood derby cars. If he hadn’t been a lawyer, he would’ve been an incredible woodworker. He lovingly restored a 1967 Ford Mustang. Dogs and babies adored him. Once he started laughing, he couldn’t stop. He patiently taught each of his children to drive. He would drop everything to help a relative or friend. He never complained. His birthday cards were painstakingly written, and his cakes were both legendary and meticulous, ranging from a model Fenway Park to a basketball to a stack of Harry Potter books.
And yet, as wide-ranging as his career and hobbies were, Gerry’s true passion was spending time with Maureen. Together, they traveled to New Zealand, France, Ireland, Canada. One of his greatest accomplishments was braving the mud and the cows through 68 miles of the St. Cuthbert’s Way in Scotland in 2019. He pitched tents and hiked thousands upon thousands of miles in nearly every U.S. National Park, happy just to be following in Maureen’s bootsteps. When he was with her, he never needed a map.
In 2008, Gerry and Maureen made their lifelong dream of living near Acadia National Park a reality, building a home in Somesville. Gerry hiked countless rocky and root-filled paths across Mt. Desert Island with his family and dear friends, volunteered with the Friends of Acadia, built trail signs, carved wooden birds, and spent many wonderful days watching his grandchildren grow around him. To them, he will forever be their beloved Pop-pop.
Gerry lives on in our smiles and our hearts, whenever we remember to think judiciously and act selflessly. He was, and remains, the best of us.
Gerry is predeceased in death by his father, Chesley, and his granddaughter, Maeve Kathleen Fournier. He is survived by his wife Maureen, mother, Theresa of Augusta, sister Gina Yamartino of South Portland; brother, Christopher Fournier of Canoga Park, CA; and his children, Katie Fiermonti (and her husband Seth) of Durham, NH; Erin Jasina (and her partner Ryan Snow) of Stratham, NH; and Michael Fournier (and his wife Caroline) of Southwest Harbor. Gerry is ever-present in the laughter of his seven devoted grandchildren, Luke and Joey Fiermonti, Maddie and Ben Jasina, and Henry and Elowen Fournier.
The family wishes to thank the warm and caring staff for the support and care Gerry received at MDI Hospital and Birch Bay-Safe Harbor in his final few months.
In lieu of flowers, the family invites gifts to be made in Gerry’s honor to the Friends of Acadia at 42 Cottage Street or P.O. Box 45, Bar Harbor, ME 04609. Or simply go outside in a beautiful place that brings you peace. Think of Gerry.
Friends are invited to call from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23,2022, at Jordan-Fernald, 1139 Main St., Mt. Desert. A funeral Mass will be prayed at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, at the Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, 56 Mt. Desert St., Bar Harbor. All friends and family—who brought such joy to Gerry’s life—are invited and encouraged to attend. A private interment will follow at a later date.
Condolences may be expressed at www.jordanfernald.com