UNITY — Bruce Robert Anderson passed away unexpectedly Monday, July 12, 2021. Bruce was born Friday, April 13, 1950, in Gardner, Mass., to Robert H. and Janice H. (Renwick) Anderson. Bruce was raised in Athol, Mass., and graduated from Athol High School in 1968.

He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in education from Northeastern University and received his master’s from Boston College. In 1974, he married Kathy Watkevich, and they had three children, Mike, Henry and Mary. He is survived by his wife, Kathy, of Unity; Mike and his partner, Leigh Juskevice, of Unity; Henry and his wife, Katie Anderson, of Hopkinton, N.H.; and Mary Anderson and her husband, Kevin “Gus” Petrak. Grandchildren are Carly and Jonas Anderson and Sebastian, Ilsa and Evelyn Petrak.

He was predeceased by his parents and his sister Jane. He taught for 12 years in Maine and Massachusetts before joining the Postal Service until his retirement. In 2011, Bruce and Kathy moved to Maine and retired to farming, where they raised sheep, started an orchard, gardened and became stewards of the land.

One of the first thoughts that come to mind when describing Bruce is his love of family and food. “Family dinner” with him was a weekly occurrence, carried out with such seeming ease. Whether it was dinner with family living close by, or larger gatherings for the holidays, Bruce always found a way to bring everyone together. In retirement, he developed a deeper sense of family through genealogy and found enjoyment in learning and sharing his lineage. Family vacations were often to the Cape, White Mountains, or Acadia. He and Kathy also visited Alaska, Ireland and Scotland. It is an impossible task to condense his life into words, but Bruce would say, “Guys, just do it.”

Bruce had a love of life that he pursued every day. He started and completed more building and land projects than we have time to recount. Some highlights were building a sailboat that narrowly squeezed out of the basement and multiple hand-carved duck decoys. In retirement, he improved his property with a pergola, barn and grape arbor. Bruce also improved their land by turning multiple woodlots into fields, much of which was used to make pasture and paddock for Mike’s farm of Highland cattle in Unity. He eventually learned to knock stumps out of the ground with the aid of a tool, after ruining two good pairs of boots.

Bruce was also an avid outdoorsman who loved to hike, run, bike, hunt and fish. He had many achievements in these pursuits, including completing over 40 of the 48 mountains over 4,000 feet in New Hampshire and leading numerous winter hiking trips up Mount Washington. Bruce ran in multiple road races, including the Mount Washington Road Race, the Burlington Marathon, and the New York City Marathon. He enjoyed bird hunting with his English Setters, duck hunting, fly fishing and ice fishing. After a 25-year search, he bagged a deer.

Bruce had an infectious, magnetic personality and was never far from family or friends, whether it was a humble, “Hey,” as a greeting or an offer to help in any situation. He has been described as the salt of the Earth, but to those of us who knew him well, he would prefer either salt or butter. And, of course, “Don’t tell Mom.” For those lucky enough to have known Bruce, they would have received a taste of his keen sense of humor and his genuine care for others. We all feel blessed for our time with him in our lives and will miss him greatly. The family took part in a private showing.

Arrangements are with Riposta Funeral Home, Belfast. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at ripostah.com.

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