In memory of Peter Oren Crowell

Peter Crowell supervising trail work, Photo Credit Lindy Heim


[obituary published in the Valley News, Thursday, October 8, 2009]


Peter Oren Crowell passed away suddenly while in Nova Scotia on October 4, 2009, 3 days after his 65th birthday.


The son of Baron Haubricch Crowell and Ruth Hayward Crowell, he was born in Framingham, Mass., and grew up in Westborough, Mass.  He graduated from Westborough High and Miami Dade Junior College.  He served four years in the U.S. Coast Guard.


Peter moved to New London in 1970, and in 2000 took up a winter residence in Ocala, Fla. to escape the cold.  He was a skilled electrician, flew as a commercial pilot for a number of years, and served as a state representative for two consecutive terms.  He volunteered as a member of the New London Fire Department from 1971 to 1988 and enjoyed the camaraderie that came along with the post.


Peter was the co-founder of Hemphill Power and Light Company and the owner and Director of Durgin and Crowell Lumber Co. in Springfield, N.H., a company he started in 1976.  He was most passionate about his company, and it was a source of great pride that he could work alongside his two beloved sons.  He appreciated his employees and knew that his success was due to their efforts.


Peter enjoyed each moment of life, flying his airplanes, warm temperatures and taking his grandsons, whom he loved and delighted in, to the airport to see the planes.  He took up bicycling later in life and made several cross country bicycle trips.  He also dedicated many hours to this passion off the bike by volunteering his time to help maintain miles of trail systems for others to enjoy with the Friends of the Northern Rail Trail and the Cross Florida Greenway, Santos Bike Trails in Ocala, Fla.  He was on a bike trip in Nova Scotia when he passed away.


Peter touched many lives and made a substantial impact in the community.  He leaves behind a wonderful legacy and will be greatly missed.


He is survived by his mother, Ruth Crowell-Singer, and stepfather, John Singer of New London; his sister, Polly Crowell of Falmouth, Maine; his two sons and daughters-in-law, Peter Baron and Tracy Rowse Crowell, and Benjamin Roland and Abigail Lefebvre Crowell; grandsons, Peter James and Hunter Samuel; Uncle Wndell Hayward, Aunt Ann Buxton, cousins Susan Hayward, Linda Hayward, Karen Morganroth, and former wife and lifelong friend, Francoise Roland Crowell.


Donations can be made in memory of Peter to the Friends of the Northern Rail Trails online at or by mailing to Friends of the Northern Rail Trail in Merrimack Count, P.O. Box 154, Andover, NH  03216.  Please note that it is in memory of Peter Oren Crowell.