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Alexander D. "Sandy"'s Story

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Alexander D. Gibson, Jr., 79, of Andover, Mass., died Friday, May 19, 2017, of pneumonia. Known as “Sandy," he was born September 13, 1937, in Germantown, Pa., and was the son of Alexander D. Gibson and May Bess (Huberich) Gibson. He attended local public schools in Andover and then went on to graduate from Holderness School in Plymouth, N.H., in 1955. While at the University of Vermont in Burlington, he met his future wife, Hannah E. Hinman, on a blind date. They were married September 3, 1960, in Burlington, Vt. Shortly thereafter they moved to Andover where they raised their four children.
Sandy Gibson led an active and busy life. Throughout the 1950s he worked on the MacLeroy Farm in West Barnet, Vt. When he returned to Andover after marriage, he worked for a local contractor, but then soon established his own excavation contracting business under the name “A.D. Gibson, Jr.” which he successfully owned and energetically and skillfully operated for 50 years. His business activities consisted of sitework for local builders and homeowners, but it also included plowing snow, selling firewood, and mowing area fields.
Sandy was also involved in many activities and interests throughout his life besides the full time operation of his business. His main interest was his family, but he also intensely pursued collecting, restoring, and using antique trucks, cars, one cylinder engines, clocks, machinery, and John Deere tractors. He was longtime member of the North Shore Old Car Club, Granite State Antique Truck Club, Power of the Past, and more recently the Model T Snowmobile Club. The story is well known in the family that Sandy with Hannah’s help built a Model T Ford from scratch shortly after they were married.
In 1976 they bought a neglected farm in Grafton, N.H., and over the course of 40 years they and their children helped clear the land, create fields and restore the house on the property. The result was an inviting place for family get-togethers. For many years Sandy and his family used his vintage John Deere tractors and machinery for “haying” on the farm, which he named “Deerefield Farm."
Sandy Gibson was a true New England Yankee. He was well known for his resourcefulness, thriftiness, industriousness, common sense, ingenuity, practicality, perseverance, and sense of humor. He also had a genuine interest and appreciation of New England and its landscape. His dedication to his family was foremost, and he will be sorely missed by them.
Sandy leaves behind his wife Hannah of 56 years; four children, Peter D. Gibson and his partner, Louise Drouin of Gorham, Maine, Steven H. Gibson and his wife, Donna M. of Walpole, Mass., Scott M. Gibson and his wife, Jo-Anne of Andover, Mass., and Alison D. and her husband, David Milne of Andover, Mass. He leaves his eight grandchildren, Emily, Meghan, Sarah, Derek, Andrew, Isabelle, Christopher, and Sophia. He also leaves his sister, Barbara and her husband, Dr. Frank Donaldson of Sarasota, Fla.; and his nephews, Allen Roth, Doug Roth; and his niece, Margot Bennett.
Arrangements are under the care of the Burke-Magliozzi Funeral Home of Andover, Mass.
A memorial service is scheduled for Sunday, June 25, at 1 p.m. at The Chapel in West Parish Garden Cemetery in Andover. Burial will be at Spring Grove Cemetery in Andover. The family would like to especially thank the doctors and nurses at Massachusetts General Hospital for their outstanding level of compassion and care over the last five years. Donations in his memory may be made to Massachusetts General Hospital, Bone Marrow Transplant Program, Care of Dr. Thomas Spitzer, 55 Fruit Street, Boston, MA 02116.
Published on  June 21, 2017
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