Travis L. Thorbjornson

Mar 29, 2021
Travis Thorbjornson

Warren — Travis Lee Thorbjornson, beloved husband, father, grandfather and son, perished at sea tragically Friday, March 26, 2021, in Port Clyde.

Born in Rockland, Aug. 12, 1966, he was the son of Edward and Jacqueline (Kaler) Thorbjornson.

Travis spent his formative years growing up surrounded by a large, loving family on Kaler’s Corner in Rockland. Some of Travis’s fondest memories consisted of spending summer days riding bikes and playing hide-and-seek in Achorn Cemetery with his brothers and cousins.

Travis also enjoyed many summers at his family’s camp on Hobbs Pond. This is where Travis truly developed his love for the water, which lasted his entire lifetime.

Travis was a 1985 graduate of Georges Valley High School in Thomaston. During his high school years, he played varsity basketball and soccer. Travis was a natural athlete and thrived on the field and the court. In addition to being an athlete, Travis was also voted ‘best looking’ in his senior superlatives.

Once you met Travis, it did not take long to realize that he was just as beautiful on the inside as he was on the outside.

That same year, Travis met the love of his life, Renée Olsavick. They were married the following year Dec. 20, 1986. Together, they would go on to raise three beautiful children in their Thomaston home. Travis’s family was the most important thing to him. He was an amazing father and spent countless hours teaching his children about nature, especially the fishing industry.

Travis was proud to be part of a third generation, hardworking Swedish immigrant family. His grandfather, Erik Thorbjornson, along with his father, Edward, were Travis's role models. He wanted nothing more than to make them proud of him.

As a young man, Travis began his fishing career working with his brothers on the family owned fishing fleet. At the age of 22, he left the family business and began captaining locally owned fishing vessels. A few years later, Travis rejoined the family business and became the Captain of the F/V Lauren Dorothy, followed by the F/V Lauren Dorothy II.

In 2019, Travis fulfilled a life-long dream to purchase and captain his own boat, the Lauren Dorothy III.

Travis always dreamed of living near the water. In 2011, Travis and Renée fulfilled that dream by purchasing a beautiful cottage on South Pond. This is where he enjoyed countless hours of leisure fishing, boating and bon fires surrounded by family and friends.

Travis was known for his dance moves. He loved to dance and often you would see he and his wife, Renée “cutting a rug” on the dance floor at receptions and parties, so much so that family and friends often jokingly referred to him as “Trav-volta.” His favorite song to dance to with his wife was Mustang Sally, and this became their signature dance song for every celebration.

An avid outdoorsman, Travis loved fishing, snowmobiling and hunting. Along with his wife, children and close friends, they made many great memories on their snowmobiling adventures.

However, the water is really where Travis felt most at home. He frequently would come home after being gone for several days off shore fishing, only to grab his fishing pole and head out with his children or friends to leisure fish on various lakes and ponds.

Travis had many great attributes. Among them was his incredible work ethic. He was a proud yet humble man. He was also one of the kindest people you would ever meet. He was an accepting man with a heart of gold. He never spoke unkindly of anyone and was always willing to help anyone in need.

He was a lover of animals and owned many dogs over the years. Each one was special to Travis and were treated with great love and care.

He was predeceased by his maternal grandparents Elmer and Charlotte Kaler; paternal grandparents Erik (Baboo) and Adrea (Nanna) Thorbjornson; mother Jacqueline Kaler; and brother and best friend Gary Thorbjornson.

He is survived by his wife of 34 years Renée; son Zachary Thorbjornson and his fiancée, Kaianne Crockett of Warren; daughter Lauren Wilgus and her husband David of St. George; son Elias Thorbjornson of St. George; father Edward Thorbjornson of St. George; brother Edward Thorbjornson Jr. and his wife Stephanie of St. George; sister Terrie Thorbjornson and her husband Jacques Lemaire of St. George; sister-in-law Tammy Thorbjornson of Cushing and three grandchildren Natalie Thorbjornson, Nolan Wilgus, Meadow Wilgus and fourth granddaughter due in August, Marcelline.

Other surviving relatives include his nieces Erika Thorbjornson of Warren, Jacqueline Thorbjornson of N.Y. and Anna Thorbjornson of St. George; nephews Garrett Thorbjornson and his fiancé Bayleigh Hilchey and Jayce Thorbjornson all of St. George; life-long best friend Brett Schwab of St. George; special cousin Paul Garrison of Maysville, Ky., as well as numerous aunts, uncles and cousins whom he loved dearly.

Family and friends are invited to a walk-through visitation from 5 to 7 p.m., Friday, April 2 at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home. All are asked to wear a mask, enter, then exit the building following a brief socially distance visit, giving time for all in attendance to greet the family.

A celebration of his life will be held at 1 p.m., Saturday, April 3, at Marshall Point Lighthouse in Port Clyde. Due to space and COVID-19 restrictions, virtual attendance to this celebration may be accessed through Travis’ Book of Memoires at Click on the Photos and Videos Tab and then the Watch Webcast button.

The Thorbjornson family would like to extend their deepest gratitude to the community of St. George, Marine Patrol and the Coast Guard for their search and rescue efforts.

They would like to especially thank Travis’s lifelong friends Gerry Cushman, Raymie Upham and Justin ‘Buzza’ Libby, for recovering Travis from the sea. The family is forever grateful for the closure this brings them.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to either the Thorbjornson Family Support Fund at or the charity of your choice. For those unable to attend the celebration, virtual access will be availavble through Travis’ Book of Memoires at Click on the Photos and Videos Tab and then the Watch Webcast button.

To share a memory or condolence with Travis’s family, visit their Book of Memories at

If you appreciated reading this news story and want to support local journalism, consider subscribing today.
Call (207) 594-4401 or join online at
Donate directly to keeping quality journalism alive at
Comments (1)
Posted by: Valerie Wass | Mar 30, 2021 11:12

This family has been through so much tragedy.  My prayers and comforting thoughts for them as well as the ones left behind to gain a little comfort in the memories shared and stories told.

If you wish to comment, please login.
Note: If you signed up using our new subscriber portal, your username is the email address you registered with and your password is in all caps