To the editor:
I am submitting a proposal to the Board of Selectmen that the new addition to the Elmer S. Bagnall School be named in honor of Donald R. Beaton. Donald served the Town of Groveland and, in particular, our school system, for a number of years, and I feel it is fitting that the town recognize his contributions.
Donald dedicated his life to the local community. He served as a member of both the Groveland and Pentucket School Committees for a number of years, and was instrumental in the construction of the current school while serving on the Dr. Elmer S. Bagnall School Building Committee. He was committed to bettering others’ lives, serving as a director of the Family Bank, Bethany Homes, Haverhill Day Care Center, Penacook Place, Northern Elder Transport and a Trustee of the Haverhill YWCA. For over 30 years he was an assistant professor at Merrimack College, where he also co-chaired the college’s capital improvement drive to construct a new gymnasium and infirmary.
He was a past president of the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce and a chairman of the Groveland Finance Committee for many years. His contributions were recognized by a number of organizations, and he was a recipient of the Boys Scouts of America Distinguished Citizen Award, the B’Nai B’rith Distinguished Service Award, Merrimack College Alumni of the Year Award, Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce Award for Significant Contribution and a Rotary International Paul Harris Fellow.
Donald lived his life to help others, and those of us who had the privilege to know him were better people because of it. He is a model for the future generations that will pass through the school, and his life is a lesson for each of us in true civic commitment. Donald’s contributions and sacrifices should be acknowledged and honored so that they are not forgotten.
James M. Dole