Theodore L. Gardner ’61

Theodore L. Gardner ’61 died on October 5, 2020 in Saco, Maine. 

(The following was published by the Maine Sunday Telegram on October 18, 2020)

Theodore L. Gardner, 81, of Saco, passed peacefully at home with wife, Joyce and family by his side on October 5, 2020. Ted was born in Sanford on October 20, 1938, son of Laurent and Muriel Gardner. He was raised in Springvale and graduated from Sanford High in 1957 and Bowdoin College in 1961.

Ted was a gifted athlete. He won 14 letters at Sanford and graduated as the all-time scorer in basketball and football. He was a two-time all-telegram league second baseman and twice named All State quarterback. He led Sanford to the 1956 State football title and set a single season scoring record with 150 points. He was an honorable mention All-American quarterback and received a football scholarship to the University of Notre Dame.

Ted returned home after one year with the Irish and married his high school sweetheart, Joyce Chadbourne. He attended Bowdoin College, where he lettered in football, baseball, and golf. He was a member of the 1960 State champion football team that defeated UMaine, the last small school to do so. Ted was a skilled golfer and longtime member of the Biddeford-Saco C.C. He was elected to the Maine Sports Hall of Fame in 2005.

Ted was an educator/coach for 30 years at Thornton Academy and Biddeford High School. He coached football, baseball and softball and was head coach of the “Tigers” 1971 Class A State football champions. In retirement, Ted did exactly what he wanted.

He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Joyce Chadbourne Gardner; twin sons, Craig Gardner of Waterboro and Scott Gardner and his wife, Sharon, of Dominica, daughters, Tracy Gardner and her husband, Duane Mumby, of Golden, Colorado, and Susan Gardner of Saco; grandchildren, Cecil Gardner, Lyza Posey, Brenna Gardner, Meriel Gardner, and Josephine Cooper; great-grandchildren, Evelynn, Emily and Barrett; brother, David Gardner and his wife, Jean, of Sanford.

Predeceased by his brother, Dr. Thomas Gardner of Memphis, Tennessee.

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