Former Back Cove Yachts president loses cancer battle

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Former Back Cove Yachts chief operating officer and president Chris Evans died Monday after a two-year battle with cancer. He was 60.

Evans, of Gorham, Maine, was a key early contributor in the development of the Sabre and Back Cove brands. He was well-known among suppliers, as he was responsible for all aspects of manufacturing, including purchasing.

Sabre Yachts CEO Daniel Zilkha issued this statement: “It is with immense sadness that we write to let you know that Chris Evans passed away yesterday after a courageous two-year battle with cancer. Many of our sail and powerboat owners, most Sabre and many Back Cove associates, as well as several vendors knew Chris for having worked with him, some for over 25 years.

“Everyone who knew him, spoke with him or sought his counsel knew that they would receive a receptive and compassionate ear, be asked intelligent questions and receive knowledgeable answers.

“His contribution to the development of Sabre, and to the creation of the Back Cove line at North End Composites, was invaluable and a critical component in the success of both companies. As COO and then president, he brought to us his deep understanding of boats, of our brands and of manufacturing. And, most importantly, he advocated and etched into our corporate culture a philosophy of caring and concern, and incessantly conveyed the notion of us all being part of the Sabre/NEC family.

“Chris remained a contributor to the management of both companies until a month ago. Even through a schedule of treatments, he found the time and made the effort to stay involved with the progress of the various projects undertaken in South Casco and Rockland, to read and participate in exchanges of correspondence, to study engineering drawings and layouts, and to attend monthly management meetings as often as he could.

“He dealt with his illness with grace, humor and a positive resignation. As a colleague, as a friend and as someone going through as difficult a moment as anyone can imagine, he was an example to all.

“He was an elegant man, a principled human being and an intelligent partner. He will be immensely missed, and our thoughts and prayers go to his wife, Margaret, and his entire family.”

A celebration of Evans’ life will be held on Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m. at Spire 29, 29 School St. (Route 114) in Gorham.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in his name to The Jonesboro / Roque Bluffs Fire Department, 3 Roque Bluffs Road, Roque Bluffs, ME 04654.

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