Sylvia M. Swinburne, 87

Sylvia Swinburne

HARRISON – Sylvia McLaughlin Swinburne, 87, passed away at her home on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017.

Sylvia was born in Portland on Sept. 5, 1930, the daughter of Lowell F. McLaughlin and Hazel M. (Morse) McLaughlin. Sylvia was predeceased in 2007 by her husband, Alfred Swinburne Jr., who she married on Oct. 5, 1950; and her sister Lois E. Ewing of Cape Elizabeth in 2015. She is survived by her children, Stephen Swinburne and his wife Karen of Scarborough, Timothy Swinburne and his wife Lisa of West Bath, Holly Swinburne Cesta of Scarborough, Robert Swinburne and his wife Rachelle Ackerman of Brattleboro, Vt.; as well as her brothers, Robert McLaughlin and wife Audrey of Merrimack, N.H., Michael McLaughlin of Scarborough; and sister Lori Crowley of Windham. Sylvia had ten grandchildren and many nieces, nephews, great-grandchildren, great-nieces and nephews.

Sylvia grew up working on her family farm in Pleasant Hills and graduated from Scarborough High School. She then attended Northeastern Business College and trained at Chelsea Memorial Hospital. In 1976, Sylvia and Alfred created a 40-acre family estate called Whippoorwill Acres in Harrison. The rustic home, large barn and pastoral setting will continue to be enjoyed for many generations. She was dedicated to her animals, loved exploring the woods, picking berries, and was an avid gardener. Nature was an integral part of her life, as were her friends and family. She often had at least one of her children or grandchildren with her on her explorations of rivers, woods, and fields. Sylvia often visited Scarborough to meet her dear friends for “Ladies Lunch.” She was generous to a fault; there was nothing she would not do for her family.

There will be a graveside service in the spring at Black Point Cemetery in Scarborough (details forthcoming). In lieu of flowers please make a donation to Sylvia’s favorite charity, Harvest Hills Animal Shelter, 1389 Bridgton Rd., Fryeburg, ME. 04037, (or adopt a shelter pet!).

Arrangements are under the care of Chandler Funeral Homes & Cremation Service, 45 Main St., South Paris. Online condolences may be shared with her family at

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