Norman Tinker

Jul 01, 2019

Belfast — A remarkable man, Norman Tinker, died here in our town of Belfast, on June 25, 2019. Norman was a family man, artist and sculptor, teacher and mentor, and good friend.

Norman was preceded in death by his mother, Mary (Tinker) Tyler, and his son, Bruce Nord.

Norman's survivors include his wife Evie, and their children, Erin and Jordan Tinker; his brother Wayne Tinker; and their families. From his first marriage Norman is survived by two children, Eric Nord and Katie Nord Peterson, and their families. Norman's grandchildren are Mason Tinker, Scott and Wilden Nord, Katelyn Nord Bryant, and Jack, Alisana, and Evan Stewart Peterson. His great-grandchildren are Layla and Nash Bryant.

Like any great teacher, Norman is also survived by those he mentored and guided through their lives and careers at Oberlin College, Silvermine College of Art, and here in Belfast.

Finally, Norman is survived by his legacy of work — collages, paintings and sculptures adorning and giving meaning to life throughout the area and, in many cases, outdoor pieces too large to fit in our average lives. In 2010, Norman wrote the following statement about his work:

"I think at best I've tapped into something primitive from my boyhood living on a small dairy farm in Western Massachusetts. I feel connected to hardscrabble people trying to eke out a living with their hands and wit. I see ghosts in the places where they've been, the things they've used and discarded. Perhaps ultimately we're all reduced to a few scraps and maybe a photo or two, taking up space in some sacred landfill. Anything more depends on how we remember and are remembered."

Norman crammed enough living into his 86 years sufficient for two lifetimes. His death leaves an empty spot in our lives.

The family will be forever grateful to the nursing staff who cared for Norman so skillfully while he was in hospice at Waldo County General Hospital.

Plans are underway for a gathering in Belfast to commemorate Norman's life and work and will be announced in the near future. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to any charity close to the giver's heart.

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