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Thank you, Mr. Cape Coral

July 20, 2017
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Communities approaching the 60-year mark suffer the same bittersweet reality as do its residents hitting the same milestone: We look back at how far we have come but, to our sadness, we find ourselves saying goodbye to many of the very people who made our progress possible.

The city of Cape Coral lost yet another one of those people last week with the passing of Paul Sanborn, Cape pioneer, city historian and volunteer extraordinaire.

One of the Cape's original "movers and shakers," Mr. Sanborn came to Cape Coral in 1962 to work with the Rosen brothers and Gulf American Land Corporation, the developer.

The planned "community on the river" had a population of just about 1,100 then, and few could actually envision what the Cape was destined to become - the most populous city between Tampa and Miami.

Except, perhaps for Paul.

Mr. Sanborn first managed the Cape Coral Yacht Club, became the general manager of the Cape Coral Country Club - the spot for all things happening in the budding community - and then served as director of Industrial and Commercial Development before becoming the liaison between the developer and the city of Cape Coral when it incorporated in 1970.

He then jumped feet first into banking, devoting his efforts to not only the city's first bank but the founding of two others.

Not one to believe that business is a community's only business, he meanwhile was a driving force in innumerable community, civic and governmental organizations and agencies - everything from the Cape's first Rotary Club, to the board of the city's first hospital and the task force that brought in the city's first high school, Cape Coral High.

He was a charter member of American Legion Post 90 and one of the city's first churches, Cape Coral Methodist Church.

He became Cape Coral's official historian in 1996 and served as president of the Cape Coral Historical Society/Museum for a decade.

If ever a community had a parent, Cape Coral had one in Paul Sanborn.

He helped guide us through our growing pains.

He worked to make the Cape the good place that it is to live, work and raise a family.

And the difference he made will forever be imbedded in our community's history.

Mr. Sanborn's funeral will be held at 10 a.m. today, July 21, at Faith Presbyterian Church, 4544 Coronado Parkway.

Memorial contributions may be made to Faith Presbyterian Church, Rotary International Foundation or the Cape Coral Historical Museum.

Expressions of sympathy may be made online at

Mr. Cape Coral, you will be missed.

But your legacy will live on.

- Breeze editorial



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