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Bookstores having trouble keeping retired game warden’s memoir in stock

Published: Jan. 3, 2022 at 6:34 PM EST
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MOUNT DESERT ISLAND, Maine (WABI) - A former Maine Game Warden from MDI has written a memoir that’s selling out at bookstores across the state. “We Were Wardens Together” was published in early December, and Sherman’s Bookstores say they’re fielding calls from not just all around Maine, but even all over the country about the book’s availability.

As Don Cote took us through his recently published memoir, it was clear that at 91-years old he still has a sharp memory for his time as a Maine Game Warden.

“One thing I can say about the wardens I worked with,” said Cote, “they were a fine bunch of guys, I’ll tell you.”

He remembers clearly his reason for moving from his early days in the Greenville area...

“There were all these fly-fishing ponds. You had to go around to see if anybody was fishing with worms. That isn’t being a Game Warden. That’s being a snake in the brush.”

...and the differences he found when he moved to MDI, where he served for twenty-three years.

“So many people,” Cote said. “Deer collisions, which was a hell of a problem. Deer never got hit by automobiles up there.”

“We Were Wardens Together’' is a book full of photographs Cote mostly took himself with his old Baby Brownie camera he paid $1.96 for in the early 1940′s.

There are also stories about his service, his family and friends, and even his turn as a TV star when he was an actor in a commercial for Camel Cigarettes in 1968 which was shot on MDI.

He of course still carries the wisdom you’d expect from a life lived like his.

“Never show anyone your favorite fishing spot.”

And he’s still got a sense of humor, as he pointed out to us a picture of himself in the book as a baby.

“That’s the only photo I ever posed in the nude.”

Ultimately, “We Were Wardens Together” is a love story as much as it is a memoir, about his late wife Bea and the love for the outdoors they shared together since the day they met in Northeast Cary in the summer of ‘49.

“Everyone that knew Bea loved her. One of the best years in my life was Bea and I living up there. No electricity, no running water.”

Today, Cote lives with his dog Rusty by the pond he and Bea built back in ‘75, downplaying his new-found fame.

“I’m overwhelmed, really I am. I’m not a writer. Stephen King did books. I’m not an author.”

At 91, Don Cote still has a sharp memory about most of the events in his life, and in sharing them has shown the rest of us what it’s like to be at peace with those events.

“I’m satisfied with a career I’ve had,” he said. “I led the life that I wanted to lead.

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