First Responders 07

Harold E. Paulsen

May 27, 1943 ~ April 12, 2021 (age 77)

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PEMBROKE- Retired Pembroke Fire Chief Harold E. Paulsen, age 77, of Pembroke, NH passed away peacefully in the comfort of his home on April 12, 2021.

Born in Springfield, MA, Harold was the son of the late Gordon W and Margrete K (Mielow) Paulsen. He was a graduate of Pembroke Academy Class of 1961. He later graduated from New England College in 1967 with a BS in Business Administration. After completing his education, Harold served in the NH Air National Guard at Pease AFB.

Harold and his family owned and operated G. Paulsen Co., Inc. and Bookland for over 50 years.

Harold began his 58 year association with the Pembroke Fire Department in 1962. His career culminated in his appointment as Chief in 1999 and he would proudly go on to serve for over 21 years before retiring just four months ago. He was instrumental in the computerization of the Capital Area Mutual Aid Fire Compact dispatch center, conversion of the town’s current safety center and the formation of the current Tri Town EMS. He was dedicated to his community of Pembroke, having previously served on numerous boards including 16 years as a Selectman.

He was the recipient of the Pembroke Citizen of the Year Award in 1990, the Meritorious Act in 1995 from the Capital Area Mutual Aid Fire Compact Board, the Community Citizen Award from the National Grange in 1996, the Meritorious Service Award from the Pembroke Firefighter’s Association in 2011, Community Builders Award from Jewell Lodge No. 94, and the Brent Michiels “Friends of Education” Award in 2021. “Chief” had outstanding vision, dedication and commitment to excellence. He always put others before himself and was proud to serve as a mentor for so many, instilling in them a high work ethic. He has left a truly indelible mark on the Pembroke community, a legacy that his family will proudly carry on.

Harold is survived by his wife of nearly 54 years, Ellen (Viken) Paulsen; son Erik S Paulsen and wife Kate of Pembroke, grandson Spencer and daughter Katie L Paulsen of Westford, MA. He was the brother to Kristine Paulsen of South Portland, ME and Sonja Gerken and husband Matt of Saco, ME. He is also survived by several nieces, nephew, grand-nieces and his extended fire family.

A Walk-Through Visitation will be held on Friday, April 16th from 4 to 6:30pm at the Pembroke Fire Station, 247 Pembroke St. in Pembroke, NH. In accordance with state and local guidelines, all attendees must wear face-coverings and adhere to social distancing as directed. Parking at the Station is limited and overflow parking will be available at Pembroke Academy. Please do not park on Pembroke St. Burial will take place privately with the family. In lieu of flowers, donations in Harold’s memory may be sent to the Payson Center for Cancer Care, 250 Pleasant St. Concord, NH 03301 or the Pembroke Firefighter’s Association Memorial Fund, 247 Pembroke St. Pembroke, NH 03275. Assisting the family with arrangements is the Petit-Roan Funeral Home in Pembroke. To share a memory or offer a condolence, please visit

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Harold E. Paulsen, please visit our floral store.


April 16, 2021

4:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Pembroke Fire Station
247 Pembroke St.
Pembroke, NH 03275


Payson Center for Cancer Care
250 Pleasant St., Concord NH 03301

Pembroke Firefighter's Association Memorial Fund
247 Pembroke St., Pembroke NH 03275

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