“Born and raised” in Osborn, David Magoon Sr. has lived in this town spreading along Moosehill Road (Route 179) almost all his life.
While growing up, Dave attended the Monticello School, the one-room schoolhouse that now serves as the Osborn Town Office. “Sadie Haslam was the teacher,” an “excellent teacher, very strict,” he said. She taught him and his three siblings: older brother Elwood, who lives in Osborn, older sister Norma Hardison of Waltham, and their brother, Stanley, who died of a rare medical condition in his mid-teens.
After he graduated from eighth grade, Dave boarded at Lee Academy in Lee. Osborn “had no buses,” and the family “had no money to buy a car to go back and forth to Ellsworth” High School, Dave said. Other Osborn students went to Lee Academy, too.
While there, Dave worked off half his board by working on the school’s farm. He “drove the tractor, plowed the driveways and the walkways, and I was credited $4 a week.” After graduation, he worked at the Ellsworth Falls Lumber Mill at Jones Bridge in Mariaville, then moved to Pittsfield and spent several years driving a truck and delivering grain and farm supplies for Eastern States Farmers’ Exchange in Detroit.
That company “went belly up, and I came home and opened a store” on Route 200 in Waltham, Dave recalled. He drove a school bus a while and later drove a truck, hauling heavy equipment for St. Regis Paper Company, which became Champion International.
“I had a very good job there,” Dave said.
He opened Osborn Transport, which operates as Magoon’s Transportation & Energy Inc., on August 26, 1992. “I figured if I build my own business, I can’t go out of business unless I go broke,” Dave said. “I was working for myself.”
He initially did everything, from delivering oil to swapping out propane cylinders. Located at 303 Moosehill Road on land owned by Dave’s grandfather, Lee Magoon, and later his parents, Nellie and Norman, Magoon’s Transportation & Energy now employs three service technicians, two truck drivers, two office staffers, Dave, and his grandson, Nick Magoon.
Selling and delivering heating oil, propane, pellets, and kerosene, Magoon’s has around 3,000 accounts, most located in arc stretching from Sullivan west across Hancock County to Bucksport and up through Orrington to Brewer and Bangor. The service technicians — “a very good crew,” Dave said — cover customers living within that area.
“We have a small division in Haynesville” that delivers pre-ordered and pre-sold oil and propane to customers from Danforth to Houlton, Dave said.
“The state supplies wood pellets to LIHEAP customers,” he said. “We’re about the only contractor they have in this area. We cover a big area … all of Washington and Hancock counties.”
Dave and his wife, Donna, were married for 51 years before she died. They have four children: Dawn Abram, who lives with her father in Osborn; David Magoon Jr., who lives across Moosehill Road; Danny Magoon of Bradley; and Deanne Merring, who lives in New Jersey. Dave also has 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Recently turned 78, Dave keeps busy. “I can’t sit around,” he said. “They’re trying to get me to retire, to slow down, but I like to be doing things.
“I love Duke [University] basketball,” especially watching Coach Mike Krzyzewski, who is “laid back,” Dave said. He visits his daughter, Deanne, in New Jersey yearly and enjoys watching country music performed on TV.
An Anah Shrine member for 30-plus years, Dave has been captain of Anah’s go-cart unit for the past 23 years. Nick also belongs to that unit.