FRANCESTOWN - On March 2, 2014, the Honorable O. Alan Thulander, passed away from a long embattled illness.
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He is survived by his wife, Barbara Rose Thulander; his children, Lauren T. Collins and her spouse, Anthony; Gary S. Thulander and his spouse, Mary; Gregory E. Thulander and his spouse, Liana. He has also left his beloved grandchildren, Elise, Krista, Shannon, Michael, Sabrina, Julia, Matt and Holly.
Born in Orange, N.J. in 1937, Alan spent most of his youth in and around Lake Mohawk, N.J. until 1951 when he attended Phillips Exeter Academy on full academic scholarship. During his time at Exeter, he was named on the all-american lacrosse team twice. He graduated in 1955 and attended Duke University, and later, Davis & Elkins.
Alan moved his young family to Hancock in 1966 after landing his first job at Sanders in Nashua. In 1968, Alan moved his family to their present home, The Woodbury Homestead, in Francestown. After many years at Sanders, he accepted a CFO position at Crotched Mountain Rehabilitation Center. He claimed, "this is one of the most fulfilling jobs of my career." Alan retired at an early age to pursue other personal goals.
During his life in Francestown, Alan held many public positions. It was his feeling that people should be involved in the protection and development of one's community. He recited, on many occasions, a poem from R.W. Glover.
"If you want to live in a kind of town that's the kind of town you like, you needn't slip your clothes in a grip and start on a long long hike... It's a knock at yourself when you knock your town; it isn't the town it's you. ... And if while you make your stake your neighbor can make one, too… your town will be what you want to see, "it isn't your town - it's you."
Alan was a member of the Planning Board, Selectman, Volunteer Fire Department, Bail Bondsman, Hillsborough County Sheriffs Department, State Legislature, Justice of the Peace, Chairman of the Vehicle Museum.
During the last few years of his life, Alan fulfilled a promise to ones who've passed before him and built a museum for the town they loved; Francestown. He was able to pull the small town together and remind them of the importance of pride, dedication, volunteering and being "a good neighbor" to bring the building to life. Through countless efforts of all that were involved, a building stands in dedication to Alan and all those who have come before who really understand the word "Town."
To the husband, the father and the grandfather - you will be deeply missed. Like you, we will live the dream, fight the fight and always put our hand out to help. In lieu of a service, flowers, etc… donations may be made to Francestown's Museum, via Larry Kulgren, Francestown Fire department, Francestown, NH 03043.
Published in The Monadnock Ledger-Transcript on Mar. 25, 2014