Trygve Hansen, a 70-year resident of Wilton, passed away peacefully on Dec. 20, 2022, two weeks shy of his 101st birthday.
Trygve was born on Jan. 3, 1922 in Sandefjord, Norway to Olaf and Karen Hansen. As a child, he played soccer and enjoyed cross-country skiing and fishing. He had a limited amount of schooling when young but didn’t let that hold him back at all. Decent employment was hard to come by in the late 1930s so he was lucky to have a friend whose father had a business and the job paid well. In the fall of 1939, he shipped off with the whaling fleet to Antarctica.
After several months, in the spring of 1940, the whalers were on their way back to Norway around the same time as the Germans invaded Norway, bringing that country into World War II. So they were ordered by the British Navy to sail to Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada to meet up with other Norwegian merchant ships. Trygve and the others enlisted in the Royal Norwegian Navy and were sent to England where they were supplied with British warships. The destroyers he served on included the HMS Newport and the HNoMS Eskdale, which was torpedoed and sunk in April 1943 by German patrol boats. After recuperating from injuries in the hospital and waiting for another ship, Trygve went to a dance in London and met Muriel Talbot, and the two promised to stay in touch. He then served on the HNoMS Stord, on which the endeavors included delivering supplies on the Murmansk Run to Northern Russia, an important role in the Battle of North Cape, and being just off Sword Beach on Day 1 of the Invasion of Normandy. His service has been recognized as he has received medals from Norway, England, Russia and France, including the Legion of Honor, France’s highest award.
Later in the war, Trygve went back to England and married Muriel on Feb. 10, 1945 at Saint Augustine’s Church in Kilburn, in Northwest London. After the war, Trygve and Muriel moved back to Norway, where their oldest daughter, Karin, was born. They soon moved to London, England, where another daughter, Ovidia, was born. While in England, Trygve played soccer for Charlton Athletic FC, a team which, at the time, was in the Premier Division.
In 1952, the family immigrated to the United States and lived in Georgetown for a while before settling in Wilton. Trygve’s first job was unloading railroad cars at Gilbert and Bennett manufacturing. A couple of weeks later he began working for a plumber, having received training at Dartford Technical College in England.
In 1960, a son, Karl-Trygve, was born. Trygve began the Wilton Soccer Program in the early 1960s before it was as popular as it is now. He coached the Wilton Soccer Club adult team for many years and coached and refereed at many other levels too. He was also an active member of the Wilton Kiwanis Club.
Trygve ran a successful business until 1992 when he retired from plumbing and heating. After retirement, Trygve and Muriel enjoyed spending time in Barbados each February and visiting his family in Norway and traveling around Europe during the summer. Around the house he never really slowed down, always having some project he was working on. And when relaxing he liked reading and bird watching.
Trygve is survived by his son, Karl Hansen of Milford; his brother, Odd Hansen and his sister, Grethe Hansen of Sandefjord, Norway; seven grandchildren; and several great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews. Trygve was predeceased by his wife of 69 years, Muriel; his daughters, Karin (Hansen) Anderson of Bridgewater and Ovidia (Hansen) Piersall of Wilton; his sister, Ovidia Hansen of Sandefjord, Norway; and his son-in-law, Vann Anderson of Wilton and his daughter-in-law, Christy Hansen of Milford.
A service and Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, Jan. 21 at 1 p.m. at Wilton’s St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church (36 New Canaan Rd.). In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Salvation Army (30 Elm St., Bridgeport, CT 06604). Arrangements have been entrusted with the Gregory F. Doyle Funeral Home in Milford. To share a memory, visit the Gregory F. Doyle Funeral Home website.