Maurice Dale Adams, 76, passed away in his home in Haddam on April 27th, 2022, with his wife, Elizabeth, two sons, Moe and Alex, and daughter, Emily, by his side, holding his hands.
Maurice was not from Haddam, but in 2004 he followed his best friend Reuben Trane to the area and built a cabin overlooking the Connecticut River for everyone to enjoy. Once settled, Maurice’s growing concern for climate change led him to educate himself and others on what can be done to lessen human-caused changes to the Earth’s environment.
It would be impossible to name all the projects and ideas Maurice had swirling in his head and on flow charts, all seeking to preserve and improve Haddam and the Connecticut River Valley. To name a few:
- He led a group of concerned citizens to challenge the supposed “benefits” of having freight trains carrying toxic materials and petroleum run through Haddam and along the Connecticut River.
- He became a founding member of the Haddam News, writing articles to inform the public about important local and environmental issues.
- He conceived of and promoted The CT River Green&BlueWay – a 30-mile long multi-use “rail-with-trail” scenic, recreational, and tourist corridor running along the CT River from Middletown to Old Saybrook.
- He served on RiverCOG’s Regional Planning Commission and fought tirelessly to motivate the Commission to prioritize environmental and “smart” economic growth considerations.
- He brought people together to try to transform the decommissioned Connecticut Yankee Nuclear power plant into a renewable energy demonstration site and energy storage facility.
Most importantly, he showed up—to everything! Local politics serve their communities best when the community members show up and hold those in power accountable. From Board of Finance, to Land Use, to Planning and Zoning, to Board of Education meetings, you name it, Maurice was there. Always asking questions, always taking leaders to task, always making insightful recommendations, and always with an optimistic smile saying, “We’re going to make this happen.”
Haddam’s State Representative, Christine Palm said it best. “I’m devastated by the news of Maurice’s death. I keep thinking of Maurice’s eyes. Like his soul, they were kind and beautiful and saw everything. I learned so much from him in the short time we had to discuss land use, urban planning, and environmental protection. We were just getting started, Maurice, and I promise you I’ll think of you every time I despair for this fragile planet; your eyes will compel me to keep going.”
Maurice’s family and friends will be invited to celebrate his life this summer, details to be provided at a later date.