Seann F. King, 33, Was Sound Systems Designer
News reached the Vineyard this week of the death of Seann Forrest King, 33 years old, in Lantana, Fla. Seann was born April 3, 1970 in Stamford, Conn., and is the son and stepson of Patrick and Joleen (Stretch) King of Eastville, Oak Bluffs, and Port St. Lucie, Fla.
Seann considered Martha's Vineyard his home, regardless of where his life led him. He arrived on Island at the age of five aboard his father's sailboat and his heart never left the Island. He returned every summer and at every opportunity throughout his school and college years. His parents, Patrick and Joleen, ran the U.S. Academy of Gymnastics and Tumble Bugs day camps on Island from 1976 to 1995, and Seann was actively involved, from helping set up and break down equipment, marching in the Fourth of July Parade and assisting as a teacher's aide with the young children. He had an affinity for children and teaching throughout his teen years. Seann's first "real" job was as a sailing instructor at Wind's Up on the Lagoon in Vineyard Haven.
Growing up in Cincinnati, Ohio, Seann attended Turpin High School and was a star fullback on the football team and pole vaulter in track and field.
Music was Seann's passion, a love he discovered very young at a chance encounter with Bill Schustick on Nantucket, whose sea chanteys and stories-to-music inspired a young child to teach himself the guitar and to go on as a composer and performer of his own songs.
In 1992, Seann crewed on the 46-foot sloop, Genesis, with owners John and Jan LaGuardia of West Tisbury from Martha's Vineyard to Palm Beach, Fla. The offshore transit, rough seas and weather, combined with his pride in completing the voyage, marked a "coming of age" event in Seann's life. He met his wife, Julie, shortly after arriving in Florida. They married in 1996. Daughter Ansley was born in 2001.
After college at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, Seann established a career in the music industry as an engineer and designer of commercial sound and video installations for hotels, department stores, large restaurants and convention centers while living in the Atlanta, Ga., area, and later in Florida.
Seann is survived by his wife, Julie Kaylor King, and daughter, Ansley, of North Palm Beach, Fla.; his mother, Judith King, and Richard Fairchild of Southington, Conn.; his brother and sister in law, Patrick and Karen King, and nephews Conner and Griffin King of Wilton, Conn.; grandparents Forrest and Gladys Wolfinger of Cincinnati and Robert and Bette Fritz of Port St. Lucie, Fla.
In accordance with Seann's wishes, friends and family will gather in April 2004 to celebrate his life and return him to the Vineyard. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Ansley Kaylor King Education Fund, SunTrust Bank, attn: Diane Neun, 667 US Hwy 1, North Palm Beach, FL 33408.