'Coach' Andrew Thompson, 80: Beloved athletic director
BRUNSWICK — Sports legend and athletic director “Coach” Andrew Thompson, 80, died May 20 at his favorite place on earth, his home by the ocean, surrounded by family.
Thompson was born in Freeport July 14, 1932. He graduated from Brunswick High School in 1951 where he excelled in basketball, track and football.
After winning a scholarship, he attended Springfield College and majored in physical education. He continued to excel as a three-sport athlete and later received his master’s degree in education from the University of Connecticut.
Thompson began his teaching career at Loring Air Force Base in Limestone. He spent the next 30 years as athletic director at Goodwin Technical High School in New Britain, Conn. While at Goodwin Tech he taught physical education and health, and coached soccer, basketball and track. He also was a mentor to students and fellow coaches, providing strong encouragement and advice that applied to their athletic activities as well as their lives. Thompson achieved many honors as an athlete, but his greatest joy was in the accomplishments of his students. Many of the bonds he formed at Goodwin Tech continued long after he stopped teaching.
In retirement, Thompson enjoyed spending time by the ocean with his wife Kathleen, daughter Kelly and granddaughter Jasmine, as well as extended family and friends. His cottage was always booked in the summer with family and friends ready to water-ski once the tide was in. When the tide went out, it was time for a quick solar shower, socializing, cookouts, reminiscing, and dancing to Thompson's record collection. This summer tradition will live on, but the best host will always be missed.
Thompson is survived by his wife of 34 years, Kathleen Nickerson Thompson; daughter Kelly Thompson and granddaughter Jasmine, of Old Orchard Beach; daughter Michelle Calebi and granddaughters Christina, of Westerly, R.I., and Lauren, of Fort Kent; his brother-in-law Eric Nickerson, of Brunswick, who was by Thompson's side to assist him in his final days; brother-in-law Emil and wife Nancy Berges, of Long Island; brother-in-law William and wife Linda Nickerson; niece Jennifer Foster and her husband Adam Foster; great-nieces and nephew Madeline, Lauren and Charles, all of Lewiston; nephew William Nickerson, of Portland; and brother-in-law Leif Nickerson, of Sebago.
Thompson was predeceased by his parents, Thomas and Doris Thompson; brother Thomas George Thompson; sister Charlotte Berges; and son Eric Anthony Thompson.
The family extends a heartfelt hanks to Moxie Sumislawski of Avon, Ohio, for always being there for Thompson.
The family would also like to thank Thompson's "A-Team" of lifelong friends, athletes, and fellow coaches, as well as the caring staff of Southern Maine Hospice, especially Dianne.
Graveside services were held May 25 in Freeport.