Lawrence E. Dwight ’54

Lawrence E. Dwight ’54 died on October 20, 2018, in Kennebunk, Maine.

(The following was published in the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on October 22, 2018):

Lawrence E. Dwight, 87, of Parsons Beach, Kennebunk, husband of LeRae H. Dwight, passed away surrounded by his loving family on Saturday evening, Oct. 20, 2018. Larry was born in Albany, New York, on May 11, 1931, third child of Alice and Theodore Dwight. He was also the grand nephew of Henry Parsons of Kennebunk.

Larry attended Albany Academy, Phillip Exeter Academy, and graduated from Bowdoin College in 1954.

At Bowdoin, he played defense in hockey (when hockey was played outdoors!) on the first team that won the small New England College Championship. He was also a member of the Glee Club and the all-male a capella singing group, the Meddiebempsters. While on a Glee Club mixer at Pine Manor College, he met LeRae on a blind date. They married in 1955 and enjoyed sixty-two years of love and friendship.

Larry went on to earn his MBA from Cornell University and, shortly thereafter, he became a financial advisor with Paine Webber in Boston, Mass. In 1960, he relocated with Paine Webber to Springfield, Mass. He became the manager for the Hornblower and Weeks office in 1964 for seven years.

Larry and Rae moved to Kennebunk, Maine in 1978. Larry worked for H.M. Payson, Dean Witter, and Morgan Stanley in Portland, and then went on to work with his son, J Dwight, at Dwight Investment Counsel. Larry truly enjoyed his fifty-plus years in the investment business because he loved studying history and economic cycles. He also loved learning about the climate and climate cycles and was known as a local expert on coastal storms, many of which he documented through photographs and journals. Larry enjoyed nature and bird watching. He considered himself a good steward of the family property, passing his wisdom regarding practical conservationism onto those around him.

From a young age, Larry excelled at all things athletic and sports related. He was actively involved in coaching his daughters in softball and sons in little league baseball and soccer. A lifelong golf player, he loved hitting the links with his golf buddies at the Cape Arundel Golf Club and various courses around southern Maine as well as with his children and grandchildren. In 2016, shortly after his wife, Rae, passed away, Larry was ecstatic when he got his first hole-in-one while playing at the Dunegrass Golf Club in Scarborough. His only regret was that he could not share his news with Rae when he got home. Larry could also often be heard cheering loudly from the sidelines at many of his grandchildren’s sports games. Papa D, as he was fondly called by his grandchildren, was always generous, constructive and kind with his comments, criticism and wisdom. He also loved watching PGA golf, the Red Sox, the Bruins, and the Patriots on TV, swapping stats and memories of past games with other sports enthusiasts.

An active and involved community member, Larry served as the chairman of the Longmeadow, Mass., High School addition building committee and was selectman for four years during the 70s. His civic service continued when he moved to Maine where he served thirty-five years on the Kennebunk town budget committee; he also served as treasurer on the Kennebunk health association, known as the Southern Maine Visiting Nurses Association, and on the board of the Kennebunk Free Library for several years. As a lifelong conservative, Larry was actively involved in the Republican Party. He particularly enjoyed introducing Governor John McKernan to Southern Maine supporters in York County. For eight years, he also served on the Finance Authority of Maine (FAME) and was vice chairman on the Maine Municipal Bond Bank for seven years until 2003.

A lifelong Episcopalian, Larry served as the treasurer of St. Ann’s Episcopal Church in the 1980s and was an active member at St. David’s Episcopal Church. Many Sunday mornings at both churches, he could be found leading the congregation in the opening hymn—something he cherished and enjoyed immensely as singing had been a lifelong hobby. For years while living in Longmeadow, he and Rae were member of a group called “Chirp and Burp,” who would meet monthly, share a potluck supper, and sing tunes around the piano. This group was filled with heart-warming fellowship and would visit shut-ins and nursing homes during the Christmas holidays to sing Christmas carols to them.

Larry will be remembered by his gracious, gentlemanly manner, and bright twinkle in his blue eyes. Kennebunk and its residents were very dear to his heart.

Larry is predeceased by his wife, LeRae; and his son, J (Lawrence E. Dwight, Jr.). He is survived by daughter Deborah Kelley and son-in-law Joseph Kelley and their daughters, Johanna and Elizabeth, of Shoreham Vermont; by son Timothy Dwight and daughter-in-law Devorah Dwight and their children, Timothy and Zanthia of Amesbury, Mass.; by daughter Louise Spang and son-in-law Timothy Spang and their children, Jameson and Clayton of Kennebunkport; by grandchildren Lawrence E. Dwight III and Avonlea Dwight of Boston, Mass.; and by his sister Dr. Sarah Stewart of Palo Alto, Calif.

We would like to extend a special thank you to all the caregivers and professionals who cared for Larry during his journey; in particular, Dr. E. and his staff, Linda, Marge, Pat, Jessica and the team at Home Instead.

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