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John Townsend Sammis

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John Townsend Sammis, 63, of Gilford, died on May 1, 2006, at home after a courageous battle with cancer. John was born in New York City on June 22, 1942. He was the son of Fred R. and Ruth Townsend Sammis. He grew up in Darien, Connecticut, where he attended the Darien public schools. He graduated from Bowdoin College in 1964.

John had a long career in publishing, writing, and editing in New York, Connecticut, and New Hampshire. He produced over 650 books, including the Sea World Books series, the National Football League Productions series, a Warner Brothers animation series, the coauthored autobiography of Earl Weaver, and a wide range of coffee-table sports books. He was a long-time resident of Norwalk, Connecticut, before moving to the Lakes Region in 1998. John was a gifted athlete, a National Master at bridge, and an often unbeatable trivia player. He pitched the only no-hitter in the history of Darien High School. He led his Publishers team to multiple victories in the Panda Bowl general knowledge contest at the Gilford Elementary School.

John was predeceased by his wife, Linda Sincock Sammis. He is survived by his daughter Kristy Sammis of San Francisco; his daughter Healy Rawston and her husband Brian Rawston, of Marshfield, Massachusetts; and his daughter Samantha Sammis of Norwalk, Connecticut; a grandson, Charles Rawston; a sister, Kathy Sammis, of Buxton, Maine; his fiancee, Jane Richardson, of Boston; and two nephews, Matthew R. Smith, of Exeter, New Hampshire, and Nathaniel Sammis Smith, of Portland, Maine.

Family and friends are invited to a memorial service at the Margate Lakeside Resort, 76 Lake Street, Laconia, New Hampshire ( at 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 7. There will be no calling hours.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital, attention: Section of Nephrology, c/o Office of Development, 1 Medical Center Drive, Lebanon, NH 03756.

Wilkinson-Beane Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 164 Pleasant Street, Laconia, NH is in charge of the arrangements.

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