Air Force Veteran Enlisted Three Days After High School Graduation

Author: MVH South Paris
Posted: June 18, 2021

While William Frazer was born in Natick, Massachusetts, he officially became a Mainer when his parents and three siblings moved to the state when Bill was still very young. The family settled in Greene, where they ran a farm. Bill, his brother, and two sisters helped with daily chores.

Bill remembers first attending school in a one-room schoolhouse in Greene. He then went to Patten School and graduated from Leavitt High School in Turner. Bill was a standout in baseball, basketball, and football while a student at LHS.

Only three days after graduation in 1956, Bill enlisted in the Air Force. He completed basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas before attending a Warren Air Force Base program in Cheyenne, Wyoming, for crypto communication, also known as cryptography. This qualified him for service at Ent Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado, home of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).

Bill served until 1960, and re-enlisted that same year, serving until 1964. He said he would have stayed in the military longer, but he needed to earn another stripe to re-enlist a second time, and none were offered in his area of specialty.

His eight-year career in the Air Force took him to many other parts of the globe, including Galena Air Force Base in Alaska, Athens, Greece, and Otis Air force Base in Barnstable County, Massachusetts, where he spent the end of his military career with the 26th Tactical Missile Squadron.

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After the Military

The same year Bill left the military, he married his then-sweetheart, Carol, and started a family. They have four sons. Bill remarried in 1977 to Gloria, and between the two of them, they raised ten children. Bill built a home in Wilton to accommodate the family.

Bill and Gloria have 17 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.

Strike!

Bill and Gloria spent their free time bowling, usually at Meadow’s Lane in East Wilton.[blog-image]-maine-veterans-homes-south-paris-veteran-of-month-air-force-william-frazer-bowling-patches They bowled in both a couples and senior league. They even won the Maine state doubles competition and went to Las Vegas to compete in the national competition. Bill was amazed by the venue – it had 200 lanes! 

The couple also won a doubles tournament in Bangor and scratch doubles in Portland. Bill has many patches from their wins over the years, which he proudly displays on a bowling vest. 

“Those are only a few,” he said, adding that he has a coffee can full of other patches. 

Other hobbies they enjoyed and shared with their children included snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and skiing.

A Full Career

After the military, Bill worked at the Jay Paper Mill and as a truck driver for Maine Oxy. He also did construction with his father, building houses for the Federal Housing Authority. His career in construction grew, and he was promoted to superintendent of a company that built schools. He worked for a variety of firms, including Dyer Corp and Girard Construction. 

He eventually went into business for himself, selling architectural hardware. After many years of owning his own business, he decided he wanted less responsibility and went to work for Door Systems in Lewiston, where he retired at 62. 

After retirement, he and Gloria continued to bowl. They also enjoyed traveling throughout New England to various casinos, even though they didn’t spend much.

“My wife and I counted our pennies all our lives,” he said. “It was just fun to visit.”

Now a resident at Maine Veterans’ Homes – South Paris, William Frazer has been named June Veteran of the Month. Thank you for your service, Bill.

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