Brian Paul Sweeney

WILTON – To sum up a life in the space of an obituary is an impossible task. There is no way to properly capture the spirit of any person, especially one so deeply loved, whose passing was so sudden and leaves us all so sad. But we – the friends, family, and community of Brian Paul Sweeney – had the privilege of sharing our lives with him for 38 years, and we want to celebrate and honor what we cherished about his time with us.

Brian was born Feb. 17, 1981, in Sanford, Maine, where he attended elementary school before completing middle school in Portland and graduating from Lewiston. He attended Midstate College and obtained his A-plus computer certification, but his genius far surpassed his formal education. Brian had an insatiable curiosity, and he studied and read and thought deeply about how everything works – from mechanics to philosophy, art and design to business. He was as passionate about sharing with his friends whatever he found fascinating as he was about fixing their cars, or showing them how to use their sewing machine, or cooking them a meal, or offering any number of other gifts of service he so freely gave the people he loved.

Though he could often be quiet and guarded about his feelings, he was a deeply feeling person: caring, thoughtful, and sensitive. He felt most at home when he could give of himself to his loved ones, whether working alongside them on a project or offering care and support as they recovered from illness or injury. Even during the times in his life when he himself was in need, he remained generous and open-hearted, offering encouraging words, humor, playfulness, and warmth. He was loyal to and protective of the people around him. He was gentle. He was kind.

When Brian died suddenly on Sept. 28, 2019, after spending most of his adult life in the Wilton, Jay, and Farmington areas, he left behind a community of people who had a greater love and appreciation for him than he knew. We all ache for more time with him: time to see the beauty of Maine through his eyes, which he captured so perfectly in his photography; time to see him get even healthier (he encouraged all of us to drink enough water and inspired us with his fitness); time to hug him and thank him for being the most selfless friend anyone could ever ask for.

Brian leaves all of us better for his time on the planet. In addition to the community of Juggalos, which gave him support, connection, and friendships he cherished, Brian’s family includes his mother, Melissa Keith, and her two sons, Jesse and Joshua; his father, Steven Sweeney, and his sons, Aaron, Isaac, Eli, and Benjamin, and his daughter, Jillian; and Brian’s stepmother, Tavia Gilbert, and Brian’s stepfather, Raymond “Percy” Wheeler, and Raymond’s children, Esther and Oscar. Brian’s countless friends, too, claimed him as their family and Brian fiercely claimed them as such in return. But the two people he loved most deeply are the children of his longtime partner, Shari Dupree: Jeremiah Wright and Dasani Dupree. Brian was never prouder or more at peace than when he called Jeremiah and Dasani his beloved children.

Brian, you will never be forgotten, and you will be profoundly missed.

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