Sunday, May 19, 2013
POLAND - George Sanborn packed a lot of living into his 56 years.
George Sanborn loved spending time with his family. He’s shown here with sons Trystan, left, and Lucian.
Each day the newsroom selects one obituary and seeks to learn more about the life of a person who has lived and worked in Maine. We look for a person who has made a mark on the community or the person's family and friends in lasting ways.
Whether it was spending time with his family, stumping for political candidates or playing music with his children, he was focused on making the most of each moment.
"When we were making a bonfire, we could never add enough wood. When he listened to music, it could never be loud enough. When we had Fourth of July fireworks, we could never have a big enough bang," said his oldest son, Joshua Sanborn of Connecticut.
Mr. Sanborn, whose greatest passion was his family, died Saturday at the Hospice House of Androscoggin Home Care and Hospice. He was 56.
His family remembered him Sunday as a fun, supportive and sometimes stubborn man who was dedicated to his family and loved his home atop Bragdon Hill.
Mr. Sanborn, who grew up on a farm in Raymond, worked in construction, but his passion was politics, his family said. He was a self-proclaimed "political animal" who served for many years as the chairman of the Poland Republicans.
Wendy Sanborn said she knew the first time she laid eyes on George that he was the one she would spend her life with. They were married 25 years ago on Halloween. He had two children from his first marriage, and they had four more children together.
The family settled on Bragdon Hill in Poland soon after the wedding. There were no neighbors for four miles -- just the way Mr. Sanborn liked it.
"This spot was just his heaven," Wendy Sanborn said. "Bragdon Hill was his sanctuary."
In addition to his children and wife, Mr. Sanborn shared his home with a "hyper and exhaustive" Australian shepherd that drove him crazy every day, his wife said. His obituary notes that Mr. Sanborn "will be missed by his dog Simon, of whom George was not particularly fond."
Rick Sanborn of Westbrook said his older brother was stubborn and, once he put his mind to something, would always follow through. He'd often go to town meetings to weigh in on local issues.
"One time he wore a T-shirt (to a meeting) that said 'I have the right to remain silent, but I don't have the ability,' " Rick Sanborn said.
One of Mr. Sanborn's proudest political moments was organizing a party two years ago that featured Gov. Paul LePage -- then a candidate for governor -- and Sen. Olympia Snowe, former Gov. John McKernan and former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card. He also loved going door to door in support of local political candidates, said his youngest daughter, Sable Sanborn.
"He couldn't be in a room with anybody without talking about politics," she said.
Mr. Sanborn loved hard rock, especially the band Aerosmith, and would often critique his son, Ethan, as he learned to play guitar.
"He really liked when I would play guitar for him," Ethan Sanborn said. "He'd just sit in my room and I'd play songs."
Wendy Sanborn said she and her family are still stunned by Mr. Sanborn's death, and already miss sharing with him their thoughts about what's going on in the world.
"I just miss hanging out with him," she said. "We'll all miss him."
Staff Writer Gillian Graham can be contacted at 791-6315 or at: