CAMDEN — Eli Kemberling passed away unexpectedly at the age of 30 Nov. 9th in Denver, Colo. He is the son of Vicky Willey and the late Paul Kemberling and is survived by his siblings, Jeremiah, and Grace Kemberling.

Eli was born July 20, 1992, in San Francisco, Calif. Eli and his family finally settled in Camden, where he attended Camden Hills Regional High School.

From a young age, Eli loved spending time with animals and in the outdoors. He enjoyed camping, fishing, and time spent on the water. He was deeply appreciative of music and art, even when his musical interests were unique. His laughter was infectious; his personality filled any room he was in.

At 17, Eli began his career working at Francine’s Bistro, a small restaurant located in downtown Camden. He played a variety of roles in the kitchen; over the course of his career, he worked as a line cook, prep cook, and dishwasher. He spent significant time working at the Bagel Cafe, a job which he grew to love and appreciate.

He recently relocated to Denver, Colo. to be with his girlfriend, Kyra Thiel. He looked forward to transitioning into animal related work and eventually moving into a shared apartment with Kyra.

Eli struggled with a life-long depression and periods of substance abuse. While often stigmatized, the family wishes to break the silence surrounding substance abuse in our communities. If a donation is preferred in lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be sent in Eli’s name to McLean Hospital for mental health and substance abuse programing in Mid-coast Maine (

Calling hours will be held from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 20 at the Long Funeral Home, 9 Mountain St., Camden. The service will be private. Flowers may be sent to Long’s Funeral Home. Condolences may be shared with the family at