On Sunday, September 10, 2023, Paul Edward Thornton, age 77, went to the big fishing river in the sky. Paul was known for his love of comedy; with one liners such as “Honey can you take out the trash? You cooked it, you take it out”, and his love of the theater.
Paul was born in Manchester, NH and spent his youth on Merrymeeting Lake in New Durham, NH, having fun and teaching water skiing. He was very proud of the fact that he never failed to get everyone up on skis.
His high school years were spent playing football, basketball, track and being the class clown. His favorite memories were of being the MC for his Senior talent night, winning two second place awards in the State speech contest and winning best actor in the State Catholic Youth Organization contest.
His life was spent working hard in management for such companies as Sears, RGIS, WIS and finally his retirement community on Lake Griffin Harbor. For enjoyment he spent his time reading, fishing, camping, acting and directing. Performing at The Dock Street Theater, directing Vaudeville with his wife and daughters in SC and performing/directing at The Melon Patch Theater in Leesburg, FL stand out as highlights. Paul found the time to be involved in his children’s activities; such as assisting with their swim team, coaching softball and being the troop leader for Brownies and Girl Scouts. He spent vacations camping with his family and friends.
His fondest memories in life were fly fishing on Raven Fork River in Cherokee, NC and the Swift River in North Conway, NH, family vacations to Disney World and as the director at the Melon Patch Theater. However, the most life-changing moments for him were watching each of his four daughters get married. He was never prouder than when he would walk into a room surrounded by his wife and daughters.
Paul was predeceased by his parents, Edward R Thornton Sr. and Rita M Thornton, and oldest brother, Edward R Thornton Jr.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Sandra J. Thornton, four daughters (Deborah A. Palmer, Kelli E. Beauparlant, Kimberly M. Wallenmaier and Shannon M. Morgan), their spouses, nine grandchildren, three great grandchildren, two sisters and one brother, Joan E. O’Neil, Carol M. Roy-Alperovitz and William G. Thornton.
Paul is being cremated and had requested in lieu of flowers, donations be made to The Melon Patch Theater, 311 N 13th Street, Leesburg, FL 34748.