Cover photo for Ellen Gilman's Obituary
Ellen Gilman Profile Photo
1949 Ellen 2017

Ellen Gilman

January 26, 1949 — April 1, 2017

Life Story for Ellen Sawin Gilman

Idaho – Ellen Sawin Gilman, 68, of Readfield, ME and Hailey, ID passed away early on the morning of April 1, 2017 at St Luke's Hospital in Boise, ID. Surrounded by her husband and three sons, Ellen died of complications of ovarian cancer.

Ellen was born on January 26, 1949 in Wilmington, DE, the daughter of Philip Sawin and Dorothy (McKee) Sawin. The family later moved to Madison, WI where she grew up with her three older brothers and older sister. Ellen had many fond memories of those formative years. She particularly enjoyed family ski trips to Wisconsin and Colorado and, especially, boating activities on Lake Mendota and the Great Lakes.

Ellen graduated from the Kent School in Kent, CT and attended Middlebury College. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Southern Maine with a degree in accounting. A CPA, Ellen pursued a short career in public accounting before moving to the paper industry. She spent her professional career in the paper manufacturing business, specifically as the controller of paper mills in Maine and in Georgia. Retiring as a senior financial analyst Ellen left behind a legacy of diligence, fair play and excellence as a coworker and supervisor.

In 1969 Ellen married Stephen E Gilman, formerly of Gorham, ME. Ellen and Steve had three sons, Nicholas, Benjamin and Michael, all now residing in the Wood River Valley of Idaho. As a family, they enjoyed skiing Sugarloaf from their second home in Stratton, ME and spending warmer vacations on Man-O-War Cay in the Bahamas. An active and very supportive mother, it was not unusual for her sons to be embarrassed by her enthusiastic cheering at their various athletic events.
Ellen was a fun, ebullient and spirited woman who had boundless energy and enthusiasm for life. She awoke each day feeling happy and joyful as she anticipated the day ahead. She believed that she had been given an extraordinary gift and that gift was the ability to wake up every morning and see the day ahead as the most lovely and beautiful day yet. She maintained that positive attitude to the very end.

Ellen is survived by her husband Stephen; son Nicholas and his wife L'Anne and their children Hayes, Alexander and Miriam of Hailey, ID; son Benjamin and his wife Patty and their children Quinlan and Avery of Bellevue, ID; son Michael and his wife Sara and their children Josephine, Anna and Cameron of Hailey ID, her brothers Philip, Stephen and Douglas and sister Laurie. She was predeceased by her parents.

A Celebration of Ellen's Life will be held Friday, May 12, 2017 at The Valley Club, Hailey, ID, time to be announced.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to:
Maine Cancer Foundation
170 US Route 1, Suite 250
Falmouth, ME 004105
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ellen Gilman, please visit our flower store.


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