Landscapes 11

Norman Houston Shippee

May 16, 2020


Norman Houston Shippee, born in Taunton, November 2, 1926, died peacefully in his Raynham home on May 16, 2020. Norm was raised in Raynham, the son of Ray G. and Millicent H. Shippee. He attended Raynham public schools and graduated from Taunton High School in 1944. He was predeceased by his wife of sixty-six years, Judith Ann (Whitters) Shippee, his sisters E. Jean and Phyllis G. Shippee, his fraternal twin Robert G. Shippee, and his niece Susan Shippee Wycoff.

Following graduation, he was enlisted in the 3-month long Army Specialized Training Program, he went to boot camp and took the program’s college courses in Burlington, VT until an old football injury led to a medical discharge. Never one to let anything stop him, he enrolled at the Wentworth Institute of Technology, graduating in 1946 with a Certificate in Architectural Construction (which was acknowledged with an Honorary Bachelor of Technology in 1996). His teaching career began a week later when he became an instructor (in the same department) as its enrollment burgeoned with returning GIs. He received a Bachelor of Science from the University of Maine in 1975 and a Master of Education from Antioch University in 1978. 

Freemasonry, beginning with DeMolay, influenced Norm his entire life. Brother Norman H. Shippee was raised to the degree of Master Mason February 6, 1968 and was a 50 year member of United Lodge 8 Brunswick, Maine. That lodge building, as it stands today, was designed by Brother Shippee.

Norman Shippee was a man of many gifts, devoted to his family, to teaching, and to the multiple aspects of his craft. Over his lifetime he built houses in Raynham and on Cape Cod.  In 1958 the young family moved to Eastport, Maine to be part of an Artist Collective where he pursued marketing his children’s furniture Play Pine, originally created as gifts for his little children and later a sought after item at many craft fairs. In 1959 the family moved downstate where he served the town of Brunswick, Maine as Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds, and designed and participated in the construction of several local buildings. During this time, he and Judy purchased a summer home in Cundy’s Harbor which became an important anchor for years to come. The family moved to Presque Isle in 1962 where he returned to teaching at Northern Maine Vocational Technical Institute.  In 1967 the family moved to live in Cundy’s Harbor, after a major remodeling of the cottage, Norman ran his own construction company building pre-fabricated homes.  He returned to teaching in 1969 first teaching at Penobscot Valley High School and later, as original faculty at both Waldo County Vocational School in Maine and North Shore Regional Vocational School in Massachusetts. In 1979 he returned to Wentworth Institute of Technology as a Professor of Construction Sciences. Retiring in 1992, he retained the title of Professor Emeritus of Construction Sciences.

In his retirement, Norm pursued his numerous interests, spending hours in his beloved woodshop on a variety of projects including carving a full-sized carousel horse. He and Judith traveled in a series of campers with a special fondness for visiting Mattapoisett, the place of his childhood summers, and Prince Edward Island. Together they were among the first presenters for the RAVE volunteer program in the Raynham schools, participating for the last time in the spring of 2018. From 1996 to 2013, Norm was a member of the Board of Trustees for the Raynham Housing Authority, serving as chairperson for many of those years.

He is survived by his children Rev. Dawn A. Shippee, Raynham, Deborah L. Shippee (Jeffrey Schneider) Cooperstown, NY, Craig M. Shippee (Cynthia Ortakales Shippee) Laconia, NH, Mark N. Shippee (Joan Androlowicz Shippee) Jeffersonville, VT, Curtis R. Shippee (Rita Rubini Shippee) Lakeville, MA, his grandchildren: Julie, Maxwell, Kate, Sophie, Mark, Alex, Lydia, Cameron and Marina; his great-granddaughters Kali and Clara; his cousin Nancy Pearce, Williamsburg, VA; nieces Kathy Shippee Cunningham and Nancy Shippee, nephews Robert and Jack Shippee.  

Private arrangements entrusted to the Crapo-Hathaway Funeral Home, Taunton.

Memorial donations may be made to Kindred Hospice, 275 Martine Street, Suite 202, Fall River, MA 02723 or a charity of your choice.


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Kindred Hospice
275 Marine Street, Suite 202, Fall River MA 02723

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