Kevin Patrick Payne, a loving father and grandfather, passed away peacefully at home on Sunday, October 16, 2022, at the age of 61. Kevin was born in Hartford, Connecticut on September 13, 1961 to Joan and Robert Payne. He lived in many towns in Connecticut and Rhode Island before the family settled in the Danielson/Brooklyn, Connecticut area in 1975.
Kevin attended Killingly High School and was proud to become a state champion wrestler in his junior year. He made many friends through wrestling that he kept in touch with throughout his life. He graduated in 1979 and went on to attain a machinist’s certification from Ellis Technical School and to take classes at Quinebaug Valley Community College. He spent 10 years working in security and was actively engaged in communities in the Northeast corner.
Kevin built a rich life full of friends and activities that he enjoyed. Of his most important accomplishments, Kevin counted being the father to his sons, Martin Nilsen and Joseph Payne as one of his best achievements. He was especially proud of his only grandson, Kenny, fondly holding a Mattel toy car given to him by Kenny in his last days.
Kevin was proud to let people know that he was clean and sober for 31 years without ever losing sobriety. He was an active member of the recovery community and supported the recovery of countless others.
Fishing was Kevin’s passion and he spent much of his free time on the shores of the local reservoirs, rivers, and ponds. The Fisherman’s Breakfast on Opening Day was something he looked forward to each year. He loved grabbing a meal at George’s Galley and valued the friendships he made there and in town. Kevin gathered fishing poles in need of repair in the hopes of donating them to children who could otherwise not afford one. To move this wish forward, Kevin’s nephew will work with Kevin’s friends and Boy Scout Troop 2 of Portland, CT to repair and donate the poles.
Kevin volunteered at several soup kitchens in the area and was an active member of the United Methodist Church in Danielson. Toward the end of his life, he encouraged the community around him to attend services with his parish in his memory. It was his wish that any items that were not used by the family be donated to local charities.
Kevin never lost his sense of humor and cracked jokes with family members up until his last days.
Kevin was predeceased by his mother, Joan Payne, and his uncle Joseph Arthur Payne; his aunts, Elaine Cook and Patricia Richard. He leaves behind his father, Robert Payne and Robert’s wife, Judy Smith, sons Martin Nilsen (Christina McGinnis) and Joseph Payne (Lauren Slaughter), as well as his five sisters, Elaine Smith of Brooklyn; Laurie Payne, Pomfret; Beth Cavar (Christopher Cavar), Brooklyn; Christine Pagano (Wendy Forbes), Killingly and Kathleen Payne (Jeffrey Turner) of Portland, as well as his numerous nieces and nephews whom he loved to take fishing: Nicholas, Colin, Megan, Patrick, Cameran, Cole, Cavar, Reece, Jack, and Selma. He also leaves behind multiple cousins and extended family, including Paul and Suzanne, Jenny and Geoff.
The family will be starting a Memorial Fund in honor of his dedication to his church and his love of fishing. Details are being arranged and will be announced publicly once available.
A wake is scheduled for October 26, 2022, from 4-7 pm at the United Methodist Church, Danielson. Funeral October 27, 2022, at 10:00 AM also at UMC Danielson. Reception to follow.