In Memoriam : Clifford Purvis

Clifford Purvis Clifford Alton Purvis - age: 86
(September 15, 1936 to January 08, 2023 )
Resident of Saco, Maine

Visitation Information:
Friends and relatives may call at Thornton Academy’s Atrium, 438 Main Street, Saco, from 9 to 11 AM Saturday, January 14, 2023. A memorial service will follow at 11:00 am in the Garland Auditorium at Thornton Academy. Burial will follow at Laurel Hill Cemetery, Beach Street, Saco.

Memorial contributions may be made in Cliff’s name to the Thornton Academy Field House campaign, an effort that he deeply supported. Checks can be sent to: Development, Thornton Academy, 438 Main Street, Saco, ME 04072 with his name in the memo line, or submitted online at

Dennett, Craig & Pate Funeral Home are entrusted with his services.

Saco - Clifford A. Purvis, 86, went home to be with the Lord Sunday, January 8, 2023 at Gosnell Memorial Hospice House in Scarborough, peacefully and surrounded by his family. He was born September 15, 1936 in Woodstock, New Brunswick, Canada, the son of George and Vaughn Dow Purvis.
Cliff’s family moved to Carmel, ME when he was age 9, then to Saco in 1951. He attended Thornton Academy, graduating in 1954, then attended Bentley School of Accounting and Finance in Boston (now Bentley University), graduating with a degree in accounting in 1956. He opened a sole practitioner accounting office in January 1957 on Main Street in Saco, and became a real estate broker in 1958, eventually co-founding Vacationland Realty. Cliff was a self-employed accountant and real estate broker for nearly 40 years until his retirement in 1995.
In 1958, Cliff joined the Air National Guard in South Portland, serving for six years until he was discharged in 1964.
On August 16, 1959, Cliff married Joyce Marie Thurston, whom he had met when they both worked at the Cascade Inn. The couple enjoyed traveling the world together and attending their children’s and grandchildren’s sporting events.
At the age of 23, Cliff was appointed Saco City Clerk by Mayor Charles Cote. He served in this capacity for several years under three different mayors.
In 1964, Cliff and his brother, Bob, purchased the Saco Brick Company and ran it until 1969 when they sold the company.
Cliff was very involved with his local community, serving in various capacities for several organizations including the Saco-Biddeford Kiwanis Club, Saco Industrial Park Corporation, Dyer Library, Thornton Academy, Maremont Little League, Rivergreen Bank, and the Lucia Kimball Deering Trust and Kimball Health Center.
Cliff was a longtime member of Bible Baptist Church in Saco, and more recently of Eastpoint Christian Church in South Portland. His faith was his first priority. Cliff could often be seen on one of his daily walks around downtown Saco and Biddeford, enjoying coffee with friends at the Golden Rooster, or at a Thornton Academy sporting event.
Survivors include his wife of over 63 years, Joyce Thurston Purvis of Saco, two sons Eric Purvis and his wife Kathryn, and Kirk Purvis and his wife Abby, all of Saco; five grandchildren: Ian, Conor, Cole, Quinn and Tessa; his sister-in-law Ann Purvis of Dade City, FL, and his niece Kellie McNary and her husband, Kevin, of Sarasota, FL. Cliff is predeceased by his brother, Robert, and nephew Steven Purvis.

Dick Agreste - January 11, 2023Contact this person Contact this person
Joyce, Eric, Kirk & Family, I was saddened to hear of Cliff’s passing. His positive passion and love for Thornton Academy will always be appreciated. May his memories and strong value system continue to guide you all in his absence. Please know that Chris and I share in your loss. Our Deepest Condolences, Chris & Dick Agreste


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