Neighbors speak kindly of man found dead in Norridgewock
NORRIDGEWOCK (WGME) – Somerset County Sheriff's Department officials say they responded to a call Thursday night about a man being pinned below a piece of farming equipment on Ward Hill Road.
"They were able to use the jaws of life to lift the equipment off the man. He was deceased at the scene," Chief Deputy James Ross said.
Police say at the body was identified as 56-year-old Frank Smith, and they don't know how long Smith's body was trapped.
"We were able to determine through family members that they had not heard from him since Monday. They've been trying to call him and hadn't been receiving an answer," Chief Deputy Ross said.
Some neighbors say they thought something was odd when they didn't see Smith riding around on his tractor.
"I hadn't seen him for 2 to 3 days, but he usually comes down and around and stops when he drives his tractor down.," Keith Curtis, who lives nearby, said.
Police say the accident happened due to a faulty jack not having the proper pin in place to support the large manure distributing appliance.
"There's a jack, and it appears the pin wasn't inserted all the way through so the jack actually rotated causing it to drop," Chief Deputy Ross said.
Some neighbors say Smith was a kind man and neighbor.
"He was a good neighbor, a very good neighbor. If you needed any help he was there to help you," Curtis said.
Some said that they were proud of Smith from moving on from a troubled moment in his past when he held a former boss of his hostage at gun point in 2012 at the Jay Paper Mill. Some neighbors say they will sorely miss Smith.
"Hard to believe he's gone," Howard Dearden, a nearby neighbor, said.
Smith operated a lumberjack business and a blueberry farm.