Alison Clark Norman

PORTLAND, Ore. – Alison Clark Norman died in Portland, Ore. on Feb. 3, 2020 at the age of 40. The cause of her death was an accidental drug overdose.

She was born in Portland, Maine to Deborah Dunn Clark and Cameron W. Clark on June 24, 1979. Her twin brother, Cam, was born two minutes before her. However, Alison used to like to brag she was older since she’d had more time to develop!

Al attended Portland Public Schools until her sophomore year, when she transferred to North Yarmouth Academy. After her graduation from NYA, she attended the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colo.

Her early life was an active and happy one. She developed a passion for horses and became an accomplished rider. In high school, she ran cross-country and played tennis and field hockey. She was an excellent skier.

Alison played the cello and had a beautiful singing voice. She loved her summers at camps (especially ones where she could ride) and she reluctantly took an Outward-Bound course, which she later came to appreciate. Alison always had many friends and led a lively social life.

Blessed with a gorgeous smile and a wicked sense of humor, Alison knew how to work a room and win people over. She was a cherished member of her blended and extended families, especially with the younger relatives. Al was like a magnet to small children and animals. Her sense of fun was contagious.

Life became challenging for Alison in her twenties as she started her battle with the disease of addiction. Over the last two decades, she underwent several rehabilitation programs, attended innumerable AA meetings, and saw many counselors and therapists in various attempts to recover, all ultimately to no avail. No one tried harder. Her death is evidence that addiction is a relentless enemy.

Even as she struggled, Al became trained to teach Pilates, which she did first in Boston and later in Portland, Ore. While in “the other Portland,” she met and married Steve Norman. The marriage and their bulldog “Norman” brought her temporary happiness. After they divorced, Steve and Alison remained friendly and supportive of each other.

In the last chapter of her life, Alison took a rigorous course on interior design. Her taste in clothing and home furnishings provided a good base for her new career choice. At the time of her death she worked as a home furnishings consultant at Williams-Sonoma in Portland, Ore.

Alison leaves behind a long list of grieving family members – her mother Deborah and stepfather Peter Murray, her father Cameron W. Clark; her twin brother Cam, his wife Julie, and their two children, Sophie and Rafe. She also leaves her stepbrother Pete, his wife Kim and their children, Sam, Maggie and Katie Murray; her stepsister Anne, her partner Christina, and their children, Ellie and Adrian round out the immediate family.

Alison was especially close to her grandmothers, her Dunn and Clark aunts and uncles and her 12 cousins. She was a family girl who loved holidays, family traditions and celebrations. She will also be missed by many friends in both Portlands and by her beloved bulldog, Warner.

Al’s life has reminded us of life’s unexpected challenges. Please help, love and educate those you know who suffer from addiction. In the powerful words of the Serenity Prayer, “Grant us the grace to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

A celebration of her life will be held in the spring.

Contributions in her name may be made to:


71 US Route One, Suite E

Scarborough, ME 04074

(Client Scholarship Fund) or