Joseph L.H. Moreau, 85, of 434 Normand St., Manchester, NH, died April 1, 2008, after a long illness.
He was born in Westbrook, ME, the son of Agnes (Leborne) Moreau and Aime Moreau, both of Westbrook, ME.
In his youth he was a parishioner of St. Hyacinth's Catholic Church where he served in the choir.
While still in high school, Joseph served in the area's Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). Before he could finish high school he was drafted into the Army Air Corps. in 1943, where he served as a tail gunner. On his first mission his plane was shot down over German air space on December 16, 1943. He and other members of his crew were immediately captured and imprisoned in Stalag XVIIB in Kremms, Austria, near Vienna, until he was liberated by the Allies in the spring of 1945, after 17 months of imprisonment. When the movie Stalag 17 starring William Holden opened in the Portland area in 1953, he was featured by the local press.
On return to the States he was transferred to Grenier Field in Manchester, where he met his future wife, Lorena Cote, at a dance sponsored for servicemen by the local telephone company where she worked as an operator. The couple was married at St. Augustin Church in 1947, and he was soon transferred to Mineral Wells, TX. He was later honorably discharged with the rank of T/Sgt. and the couple took up residence in Manchester, where he continued to live.
He was a member of American Legion Post 79 here in Manchester as well as the DAV.
He served for many years in the Manchester Fire Department, from which he retired in 1978. He was stationed at the former Central Fire Station,(Engine 1), where he worked the pumper as well as Engine 6. He would replace firefighters at other stations while they were on vacation. In his spare time he served as a casket bearer for various funerals throughout the city.
Joe was involved with East Little League for many years while his sons were young and helped to build the East Little League field. He and his wife also volunteered to host members of a baseball team from Louisiana when the Babe Ruth World Series was held in Manchester in 1982.
Foe several years he worked part-time at Ferretti's Alexander's and Vista Foods supermarkets. He would also assist elderly shoppers on shuttle buses to and from these supermarkets.
He has served as a Eucharistic Minister at St. Pius X, where he has been a parishioner for 50 years. He also served in the choir, was a founding member of the Hi-Hopes group and served with the St. Vincent de Paul Society. He and his wife Lorena were founding members of the fellowship ministry there after the 10 0'clock Mass.
He is survived by a brother, Rene Moreau, of Portland ME; a sister, Louise'Terry" Possocco, of Biddeford, ME; 3 sons, J. Leonard Moreau, of Manchester, Russell R. Moreau, of Exeter, and Dean D. Moreau serving with the Air National Guard in Langley Field VA; 2 grandchildren, Morgan Moreau, currently pursuing a Masters degree at the University of Connecticut, and Caroline Moreau, a student at UNH; other nieces and nephews; many honorary grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated Saturday April 5, 2008 at St. Pius X church, Candia Rd. Manchester.
Burial took place at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Liberty House, 75 West Baker St. Manchester, NH 03103.
(submitted by the family)