During the month of August, the 537th flag to fly atop the Old Glory Tower in the North End honors CSGM (E-9) Eudore George Gagne, Jr., known as “Yogie” to his family and friends. Gagne proudly served in the United States Army for nearly 23 years, 12 of which were spent overseas.
Command Sergeant Major Gagne had a long and distinguished military career, serving in the United States Army from 1954 to 1977. He proudly served in Thailand, Korea, Lebanon, Germany and was a veteran of the Vietnam War. Specifically, Gagne served during the Vietnam Counteroffensive Phase V and VI, TET 69 Counteroffensive and Vietnam Summer/Fall of 1969.
Gagne served prominently with the 10th Special Forces, the 101st Airborne Division, the 82nd Airborne Division and the Army Security Agency. His last duty assignment was at Ft. Devens, MA with the US Army Intelligence School.
Training courses he attended included the Unit and Organization Supply Course, NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer) Academy, Senior NCO Course, Cryptologic Operations Chief, MAPTOE (Management Practices in TOE Units).
Throughout his long military career, he was awarded the following medals: Bronze Star, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnamese Jump Wings, Meritorious Service Medal (with one oak leaf cluster), Army Commendation Medal (with two oak leaf clusters), Army Good Conduct Medal (7th award), National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation, Meritorious Unit Citation (2 awards), Overseas Service bars, and the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry w/Palm.
He also earned the following badges: Marksman Badge, Sharpshooters Badge Rifle M-14, Expert Badge Rifle M-16 and the Parachutist Badge.
Gagne was born in New Bedford on Jan. 5, 1935 and passed away at the age of 81 on Nov. 8, 2016. He resided in New Bedford, as well as Jacksonville and Fruitland Park, Florida.
He was employed by Atlas Tack as well as Swift and Company prior to enlisting in the military. After his honorable discharge, Gagne earned his Associates degree from Fisher Junior College. He was then employed by Cape Cod Staging, Chamberlain Manufacturing and lastly the Upper Deck, from which he retired.
He was also a member of the Masons the Shiners organizations. According to his obituary, he enjoyed cooking and playing golf, and he was a lifelong Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots fan.
Gagne was predeceased by his parents Eudore G. Gagne, Sr., and Edith Elva (Jansen) Gagne, his late wife Mary Noel (Dahlberg) Gagne and his sister Joan Marie Gagne.
He is survived by his wife Janice A. Picard-Gagne; 2 children: Tina Chicoine and Gary D. Gagne, Sr.; a brother Ralph Gagne; three sisters: Katherine Anne Gagne -Grobell; Cindy Gagne; and Sandy Gagne; 7 grand children, nine great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandson.
The late Joseph Theodore, a World War II veteran and Purple Heart recipient began the practice of flying veterans’ flags above the Old Glory Tower 46 years ago.
Linda Ferreira, a marketing representative at Ashley Ford in New Bedford, researches the life histories of area veterans. Shaun Neary, Parts Manager of the dealership, and former Marine, raises the memorial flags on the veterans' behalf. Those who would like to honor a veteran by flying a flag at Old Glory Tower can contact Ferreira at (508) 996-5611 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.