Shawn E. Sullivan ’82

Virginia Beach – Shawn E. Sullivan of Jacksonville, Fla. left us on his way home after a beautiful morning of riding the waves on December 1, 2013. Shawn was age 55 when he finished his life’s work as a marine engineer, having proudly learned his skills at Maine Maritime Academy. Following graduation, Shawn served in the United States Merchant Marine and traveled the world. He came ashore to devote himself to family life and to serve as a port engineer in Mayport, Fla. Most recently, Shawn worked for Alion Science and Technology. He tended many ships including the USS Gettysburg, USS Taylor, and the USS Sullivan. His hard work, organization, and attention to detail were recognized by everyone with whom he worked. Shawn’s achievements were highlighted by his command when he earned the highest award given by the Civil Service and the Golden Wrench Award, which was created to recognize his service. He successfully mentored many young sailors and co-workers in life skills that would long survive their tour of duty.

He drew people to him; your troubles were his. Shawn’s friends spanned the country, always finding their way to his home and heart. He was a loyal and dedicated friend, who always made us laugh.

His wife, Vicki K. Sullivan, and daughter, Sabrina S. Sullivan, of Jacksonville, Fla. survive him, as do his mother, Margene Sullivan, his siblings, Ann, Kevin, and Shane Sullivan of Virginia Beach, Va. He is also survived by eight nieces and nephews, Alex Kigerl, Kelly and Brynne Burgess, Lauren and Ashley Sullivan, Nicholas Bellucci, George and Sahara Sullivan, all of whom delighted in their Uncle Shawn.

A service will be held on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11 a.m. at The Church of Eleven22, 14286 Beach Boulevard, Jacksonville, FL, followed by a reception. There will be a paddle-out and celebration of Shawn’s life on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 11 a.m. at the Wyndham Surf Club Ocean Grille, 5700 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA.

Shawn will be missed by all who knew him. If you wish to honor Shawn with a gift, the family asks that contributions be made to Ocean Conservancy at

Please visit our online Tribute at

Published in The Virginian Pilot on Dec. 8, 2013