Robert W. Laffin ’38

Robert W. Laffin ’38 died on December 24, 2011, in Eureka, Montana.

He was born in Springfield, Vt., on December 18, 1916, and graduated from Springfield High School, where he was a champion ski jumper. He continued ski jumping at Bowdoin, where he also played cornet in many musical groups and was a member of Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He had a long and varied career in business and management, including working as a self-employed consultant in Germany and the United States in the early 1950s. He started Laffin Supply in Springfield after World War II and briefly operated a ski lodge near Gorham, N.H. In the 1960s, he was general manager of Simmonds Precision Products, which manufactured parts for the aerospace industry. In his later years in Florida, he was asked to take over operation of several small companies on the brink of failure and turned them around. He married Elizabeth “Lisl” Durrance in 1942, and they had three sons. In 1972, he married Christine Kanar. He is survived by three sons, Peter, Christopher, and Rob; two grandchildren; a stepson, Stephen; a stepdaughter, Margaret; three step-grandchildren; and a sister, Jane Perry. He was predeceased by his wife of 37 years, Christine Kanar Laffin, in 2009; an adopted daughter, Mary Elizabeth; and an infant son, Jonathan.

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