Jerry Bellows, long-standing TIMPRO Secretary, steps down.

Jerry Bellows joined TIMPRO team shortly after it was formed. He notes that his membership number - #09 - shows how early it was. “I wasn’t secretary from the beginning. My only qualification was that I was willing to do the job. (Then) President Joan [Nichols] agreed to let me try. I learned by a lot by trial and error, as well as input from the rest of the BOD,” he said.

Born in Sterling, Jerry has lived in Connecticut all his working life. “I had an interest in logging at an early age, I went to work for a local logger when I was 19 and thought I could make a living out of it. I didn’t realize then what a lean living it would be,” he said. His father died when he was 17 and that changed his path in life. “I’d like to think that a different path brought me to the same place” His grandfather was a sawyer as well as a logger but that was decades earlier, using mostly hand saws and horses. “I wasn’t aware of any of that until I took an interest in the working in the woods”

Reflecting on his years as a logger, he pointed out how the work really hasn’t changed but the methods have. Hand saws and horses then, mechanical harvesters and forwarders now. “Weather is still a major problem and we are still at her mercy, although a climate controlled cab sure makes it a little more tolerable. We had one cold week in the last month, but then it warms up and starts raining again and that slows everything to a crawl.”

Increased regulation is another problem. “Much of the land managed by DEEP is subject to seasonal work restrictions because of endangered species -  bats, turtles, rattlesnakes, and some rare plants. I do give the state foresters credit as they try to identify these areas as opposed to stopping all logging. We have a substantial amount of work in these areas and it’s difficult to manage our own time the way we used to. If there is two weeks to finish a job and good weather we may still have to move off because of the seasonal restriction.”

Jerry noted how much time he now has to spend maintaining his two forwarders and two harvesters: “More machines = more days of maintenance. Thankfully my son Jeremy picked up on the electrical repairs, saving us a lot of time and expense. Something always need repair usually when you can least afford the time, like two weeks before the seasonal restriction kicks in. We try to always have some work that’s not going to be affected by the time restrictions and hope the weather cooperates.”

For Jerry, stepping down as secretary doesn’t really mean retiring though. “I could retire but don’t think I ever will. I work with my son Jeremy and as long as he can work with me, I’ll probably keep working in some capacity,” he said. “I’ll still be active in TIMPRO but I hope to have more time for hunting and fishing. The last several years I’ve gone Elk hunting in Colorado, Montana; Bear/Deer in Maine; Deer in Tennessee; Moose in Newfoundland. Thankfully I’m not dependent on what I shoot. I guess I really hope to live long enough (and still make enough $) to take my grandson Cod/Haddock fishing or Small mouth Bass fishing in Maine, I have a little better luck doing that.”


2017_Treasurer Trish LaPlante with_Jerry Bellows

Secretary Gerald Bellows with Treasurer Trish Clark at the 2017 TIMPRO annual meeting.

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