Major Leaguer was fined $400 for shooting Maine boy in 1952 hunting accident

BG's ME: Major league hunting accident in Milo

MEDFORD, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — In the late 1940s, business leaders in Milo had a plan. They thought it would promote the area if Major League Baseball players hunted in Maine. They invited a former player and coach named Phil Page.

He had a great time and invited some friends. Soon, players like Carl Fuillo, Whitey Ford, Ed Lopat and Phil Rizzuto were hunting annually in Maine. Working with locals, they built a lodge in Medford called the Bullpen.

The town held an annual hunter's dinner that was the toast of Maine with the governor and other leading politicians making sure they had a seat at the table.

On Nov. 17, 1952, a group of players, which included Carl Furillo of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Vern Bickford and Johnny Logan of the Boston Braves, Kenny Raffensberger of the Reds and Monte Kennedy of the New York Giants were hunting.

According to legendary sportswriter Bud Leavitt of the Bangor Daily News, Logan and Kennedy shot deer and saw a third run off. Local guide Red Bragg led Page and Raffensberger into the woods off Route 6.

Gerald Caron and his father Alphonse were cutting wood about a quarter of a mile off the road. Bragg heard them working and mistook them for a deer. He stared into the thicket and saw something brown, perhaps the older man's hat. He fired. Page raised his rifle and fired as Bragg took a second shot. Raffensberger, who was to the rear, did not shoot.

Gerald Caron, 18, was hit in the wrist by the first shot. He raised his arm in anguish and was hit in the torso by two shots, dying within seconds.

Page and Bragg posted bail of $1,000. They would eventually be charged with negligence and fined $400,

Caron was the youngest of 13 children. His parents sued Page for $12,000 and Bragg for $8,000.

Page, who had been fired as a Reds coach by Rogers Hornsby just the month before, settled for $1,200. Bragg never had to pay as he drowned in the bad floods of 1953.

Caron was originally buried in West Enfield. His family moved to Waterville, and upon the passing of his father, he was reinterred in Waterville. 

Copyright 2016 WCSH


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