Obituary: Herschel G. Abbott, Professor Emeritus of Forestry

Herschel G. Abbott, 92, professor emeritus of forestry, died March 1 at his home in Leverett.

Born in Woodstock, Maine, he was a junior at the University of Maine when Pearl Harbor was attacked. He immediately enlisted in the United States Navy V7 program. Upon graduation in 1943, he reported for service and one day after receiving his commission, he married Beth Kennedy. He served three years of active duty and 24 years in the Naval Reserve.

After his active service in the Navy, he continued his education and obtained his master’s degrees in biology and forestry from Harvard University.

He joined the UMass faculty in 1953 and taught for 33 years until his retirement in 1986.

He was the recipient of numerous awards for his contributions to the forestry profession. He was particularly fond of, as well as adept at, managing white pine stands and identifying wildflowers and unusual flora.

In the late 1980s, he was instrumental in establishing and funding several scholarship funds, including the Herschel G. Abbott Award for Forestry. He also practiced what he preached. With his friend and colleague J. Harry Rich, he acquired and managed several woodlots including the property now known as the J. Harry Rich State Forest in Groton.

His wife of 60 years, Beth (Kennedy) Abbott, died previously.