Spencer Evans


Spencer Evans @ Sam & Anna’s elopement reception NYC 1995?

Spencer Evans

Returning to the family’s home on Bagaduce Farm, he attended West Brooksville’s two-room schoolhouse for the first few years of formal education. He then attended the Hackley School, Tarrytown, N.Y.; finished his third through sixth forms of college preparatory study at The South Kent School, Kent, Conn., Class of 1954; and Lafayette College, Easton, Pa., Class of 1958.

After college, he married and started a family while serving honorably in U.S. Army Intelligence for two years, stationed at Fort Dix, N.J. From 1960 to 1968, he worked with Campbell Soup Co. in marketing and product management. He went on to found Associated Yachts, also working with Morgan Yacht Corp. and others in the yachting industry from 1968 to 1985. In 1985, he founded Harbor Financial Services and Consulting, where he worked until his death.

While he spent his life in many places from Mexico to the Middle East, Bagaduce Farm in West Brooksville, was always his home. He returned permanently in 1990 with his fiancée, Deborah, a foundling cat, Dudley, and a yellow Lab, Bo. In 2005, they put the “Farm” back in “Bagaduce,” raising several old-fashioned breeds of livestock over the years.

Spencer’s favorite toy was the miniature sloop, hand-carved by a houseguest, which he kept on his desk. From the age of 5 on, he had a consuming passion for sailing, in particular offshore racing, competing in multiple Newport-Bermuda races and the Southern Ocean Racing Circuit since 1969, in addition to one-design competitive sailing, America’s Cup competition, and regatta management. In 1977, he was elected to The Storm Trysail Club, where he served on membership and Block Island Race Week committees.

His “15 minutes of fame” happened twice. First, he appeared on NBC Sports Sunday as co-navigator of Diana Nyad’s initial attempt to swim from Cuba to Key West in 1978. And later, in 1984, when he was awarded the George W. Mixter Navigator’s Trophy by the governor of Bermuda after sailing the Newport-Bermuda Race on a J-35 Windquest, winner of the St. David’s Lighthouse Division.

He and a few dedicated sailing friends founded Essex (Conn.) Corinthian Yacht Club. In 1984 and in 1987, he served as its commodore. Beginning in the 1990s, he had many wonderful years of racing in Blue Hill’s Atlantic Fleet on No. 44 Try Again. After turning the helm over to son Ian, he dedicated himself to race management. He set his last finish line and became race committee chair emeritus of Kollegewidgwok Yacht Club, Blue Hill, in 2014.

Spencer is survived by his wife Deborah, his daughter-in-law and his three sons: Sandy (Jonathan Cavanaugh’s widow) of Ponte Vedra, Fla., and their children, Cameron Spencer and Lee Healey; James Ganson and wife Amy of Ponte Vedra, Fla., and their sons, John Philip, Charles Schuyler, and Trammel McGlashan; Samuel Spencer and wife Anna of Oyster Bay, N.Y., and their children, Mabel Dodge Ellicott Luján, William Maxmillian Magellan, and Samuel Spencer Lockhart Tasman; Ian Healey of Sag Harbor, N.Y., and his children, Christina Mackenzie, Charlotte Healey, and Samuel Henry Cooke; all in addition to his aunt, Louisa Clark Spencer of New York, N.Y., several nieces and nephews, many cousins, god-children, and their families around the globe.

Contributions in lieu of flowers to the Youth Sailing Program (KSEA) of Kollegewidgwok Yacht Club in Spencer’s name will be most appreciated: KSEA, PO Box 368, Blue Hill, ME 04614. Spencer’s “Anchors Away” day with family and friends is planned for later this summer.

Know when to pay your respects.