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Erv Bickford

Posted By Roger Martin Sunday, May 13, 2012 10:23 PM
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Bill White
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 2:38 PM
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Photo of Erv




athscentraliowa.org
47 Willys CJ2A, 47 Bantam T3C, 47 Diamond T 910, 53 White WC24, 49 IH KBS11
Peter Mullin
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 2:19 PM
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Erv Bickford was the epitome of a gentle and humble man. Soft spoken yet passionate about his family, community, business and hobbies. Erv often told stories about the "old days" but it was the deeds of others that was always the focus. The story of Erv's trucks hauling fuel oil to the summit of Mount Washington, if told at all, was relayed as what his guys did when in all probability Erv made the first run so he wouldn't have to ask his guys to do something he hadn't already tried. The stories of he and the late George Humphrey (and others) hauling a steam locomotive cross country behind a Mack LTL has been told often by the others - rarely, even if prodded by Erv.

I have known Erv for better than 20 years and I learned a few things by reading his obituary this morning. I knew he had served on the town council and other boards for the Town of Yarmouth but didn't know until today he served as Mayor and was a member of the Yarmouth Fire Department. I could tell he was a smart well educated man, I thought it was all from the school of hard knocks. This morning I learned that he studied mechanical engineering at the University of Maine.

One of my fondest memories of Erv, which I will probably re-tell a few times this week, comes from the ATHS Convention in Syracuse New York in 2003. My wife and I were riding the bus from the hotel to the fairgrounds. Seated in the row directly ahead of us were John Montvile (Mack Historian/Author), Harvey Eckert (Mack/Fire Apparatus Author) and Erv Bickford what a wealth of knowledge - and a priviledge for me to be able to listen and participate in their conversation.


Peter Mullin

Newsletter Editor

Pine Tree Chapter ATHS
Bruce Ohnstad
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 1:09 PM
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Erv called me in response to a want ad I had placed a year or two earlier. He had some W series White rear suspension parts. We ended up chatting a while over a few more phone calls, then I met him at his 1939 D 50 International in South Bend. His and his friends trips back to their truck were limited, but at the last day he brought the truck parts over to his D 50, where I carried them to my ride.

During the phone calls arranging this I asked how much I can pay him. He chuckled and said, "just let me drive your White." That caught me off guard, and I said, "well, you'll probably have to come to it more than it to you." We both chuckled and that was the price.

Only later in the Double Clutch article did I realize how big a collector he was. Very humbling and grateful to have met him.

Bruce


1932 White 643 restored in the working museum
Jeff Lakaszcyck
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 11:36 AM
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This is truly a sad day. I first met Erv at Baltimore in 2006. He was kind enought to chat with me for a few minutes about the Macks he had brought. He was especially proud that he was able to bring his original Garford Trucking BM since it was from Baltimore originally. Erv was an icon in the hobby, and I was thrilled when he began participating occasionally in the WAI this past year. I was even more thrilled when he called me to talk about some of the trucks I had featured. Over the last several months Erv and I had developed a phone friendship and I always cherished his calls. He will be very much missed by anyone who had the opportunity to make his acquaintance.

I wish I had a good photo of Erv, it seems he never stood still for very long. He is in this photo from Baltimore in front of his trucks, but he is behind the other guy.

My condolences to Erv's family. We will keep them in our prayers.

http://forums.aths.org/Uploads/Images/117ed08a-749b-4a83-983c-7e54.jpg


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Jeff
 Mack 1938 FH & 1936 BM Bickford.jpg (132 views, 187.09 KB)
Monday, May 14, 2012 11:37 AM by Jeff Lakaszcyck
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 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 9:47 AM
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Daryl wasnt Erv in the middle of a truck build when he passed away ? or did i miss understand it
junkmandan
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 4:44 AM
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Irv was a legend that provided some good stories of trucking history ,probably enough for a good book !
Daryl Gushee
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 3:40 AM
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Erv Bickford...........My friend.

http://forums.aths.org/Uploads/Images/52d76cf0-2d4b-4c46-9d81-55d9.jpg


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I can break anything.

Daryl Gushee
New Gloucester, Maine
MrMobil
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 3:35 AM
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One of my Dad's favorite friends. A true gentleman and "salt of the earth" as one would have to say. Like Dad, he hauled petroleum with his own trucks into his 70's. Erv often talked of his greatest feat in the fall, filling the generators' fuel tanks on top of Mount Washington so they could last the winter.

The neat thing about Erv was he appreciated it all, a nicely restored to an original pulled out of the barn with 30 years of dust on it. He saw the same amount of beauty in both.

As Gary Mahan relates to Francis Ryan on one of his truck boards, Erv began this hobby long before it was fashionable and saved so much machinery from the wrecking yards. He made the hobby about kindness, helping others and just enjoying oneself at a get together.

Andy Henderson Jr.

Below is a pic of Erv, George, Bob West and Dad "in their glory" as Mom would say on one of the Smith Old Truck tours. I gave a copy of this to Irv the last time I saw him at Macungie and he loved it.

 Erv0002.jpg (406 views, 618.37 KB)
Friday, May 18, 2012 12:41 PM by MrMobil
Brocky
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 3:20 AM
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I had several conversations with Erv this spring about the Brockway show. What a GREAT gentleman.. He will be missed by all in the hobby.

My condolences to the Bickford family.


Brocky

Diamond T and Brockway Collector
Michelle Cole
 Posted Monday, May 14, 2012 2:42 AM
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I too was a friend of Erv, he and I talked on the phone with each other about once a month. I along with many others will sorely miss him. The loss of Erv is a loss to the entire truck collecting hobby.

Michelle
With age comes wisdom. With age also comes lots of pains never before felt.



www.michellesfords.com

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