Thomas N. "Tom" Tracy

Thomas N. "Tom" Tracy

Portland, ME - Thomas N. Tracy, 66, of Portland, ME, died peacefully at Maine Medical Center surrounded by love on April 3, 2019, after a brief and arduous battle with multiple myeloma.

Tom was born and raised in Meriden, CT, son of Jane and William Tracy, Sr. He received a BS Ed. from the University of New Hampshire. In his first teaching job, Tom won over fellow teacher, Mary Ainslie, with his smile, above average jokes, and gentle sense of fun. In 1977, they married in Ithaca, NY, and happily raised two children.

He went on to earn an MBA from Cornell University and worked at LL Bean, Coastal Enterprises, and Delorme Mapping before starting Deep River Publishing and (now After 25 years in business, he taught math in the Alternative Ed. program at Bonny Eagle High School and the Maine Academy of Natural Sciences. Tom treasured individual connections with his students. In retirement, he organized the Campaign for Young Families, lobbying for universal early childhood education in Maine.

Tom loved life. Summer sunrises often found him canoeing around Bow Lake in New Hampshire. He was an active member of Portland Friends Meeting and founding board member of Friends School of Portland. He cherished his spiritual community and friendships arising from it. He loved his family deeply and was an exceptional husband, father, and grandfather. He was a firm optimist, a master of wry one-liners, and loved getting to know and understand everyone he met.  

He leaves his beloved wife of 41 years, Mary Tracy; son, Luke Tracy, of Brooklyn, NY; daughter, Ann Cole, her husband Ryan Cole, and granddaughters Bailey and Margot of Falmouth, ME; brothers, William Tracy, Jr. and his wife, Mary Lou Tracy, of Standish, ME; and Davis Tracy and his wife, Marty Williams, of Gardiners, PA; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and Ainslie in-laws.

A memorial service will be held in May. Tom’s ashes will be buried in a family plot near the summer home that has been the heart of the Tracy clan for four generations. A proud leftie, both in handedness and politics, he asked to be placed to the left of his parents.

The family thanks all the staff who provided skillful and compassionate care at Gibson Pavilion at Maine Medical Center and at Maine Medical Partners Medical Oncology.

Tom was a self-described news junkie who believed strongly in equal justice and the importance of a free press. Memorial gifts may be made to Committee to Protect Journalists, or Friends Committee on National Legislation,

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  • Grace Cleaves on

    Dear Mary and Kids, I’m shocked to read of Tom’s passing and am sending my deepest condolences. I remember his wry wit, his amazing kindness, and the piles of unfiled paper that owned the floor and desk of his office at Deep River. He was full of ideas, and love and schemes for the next newest thing. I felt better just knowing he was in our world.

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