It is with many fond memories and heavy hearts that we share the passing of John Andrews, the “Founder of the Eastern Trail” and an ETA President Emeritus. John was, indeed, an inspiring man of vision and untiring spirit. See some of the many public tributes to him below.
John’s vision to create the Eastern Trail started in the early 1990’s. He was persistent, but patient, and made tremendous progress in a relatively short amount of time.
Sadly, John passed away on February 20, 2017. Read his obituary here.
Most thought, at first, that there was little chance of his vision moving forward. But step by step, those who met and spoke with John began to feel his energy. One early press account of John’s vision had this quote: “But John Andrews, chairman of Saco Trails, may have found a way around it – the Eastern Trail. In his dream, the Eastern Trail provides a lush, beautiful four-season corridor for cyclists, hikers, inline-skaters, cross-country skiers and snowshoe enthusiasts to travel.”
Click on the image below for a memorial slide show:
After starting this amazing effort, John lived on the trail, used the trail, and guided countless others to understand and appreciate this great resource.
| “But beyond and above the awards, the mounted plaques, and the monuments is the indelible memory of a dedicated and forward-looking man.
Thank you, John, for so generously spending time with us.”
Our sympathy goes to his family – sons Mike and John and their families, including “astonishing granddaughters” Amanda and Iulia. John was predeceased by his “genius wife” of over 50 years, Marietta.
From all of us at the Eastern Trail Alliance and the Eastern Trail Management District, it’s been a fun ride John! On behalf of all of those who find themselves on this incomparable trail, thank you!
Here are some of the many public tributes to John:
- Andrews leaves legacy of hope, Portland Press Herald pub. 3/5/2017
- John Andrews, force behind the Eastern Trail, dies at 79, Portland Press Herald
- ‘An amazing legacy’, York Co. Journal Tribune
- Great vision and energy: Remembering Eastern Trail founder and champion John Andrews, on-line tribute by the Eastern Greenway Alliance
- Tweet by Portland Trails: “Our thoughts, prayers & gratitude to the Andrews family. An inspiration & local hero for conservation community.”
- Nancy Grant, Executive Director of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine posted “His MO of always practicing ‘patience, persistence and politeness’ is a great strategy for ANY bike/ped advocate. We’ll miss you, John!”
Here are some other samples of John’s work:
- The Economic Benefits of the Eastern Trail in Southern Maine, published December 2014
- Pedestrian bridge dedicated to long-time trail leader (5/16/2012)
- Two Major Awards Honor ETA Emeritus President John Andrews
- Blazing a trail – Portland Press Herald, 8/7/2011
- Eastern Trail Gap Bridged – 9/29/2011
- A leader on the trail (Nov. 28, 2010)
- “Adding Trails to Rails Saves Lives” – a 2008 ETA Study
- Can Trails Reduce Rail Trespass Fatalities? by John Andrews (revised 4 April 2006)