Harold Putnam, AG '32, of Cambridge, VT, died December 24, 2013. He was born on September 8, 1914, in the farmhouse on the Putnam Family Farm in Cambridge. His parents were the late J. Kinsley Putnam and Mahelle (Butler) Putnam. Traveling by horse and buggy, Harold attended Cambridge High School in Jeffersonville, and graduated as the class valedictorian in 1931. He attended the Vermont School of Agriculture, graduating in 1932. Following graduation, he held a job with the Agricultural Conservation Program for a few years. For many years the farm hosted sugar-on-snow parties for the ACP staff. On June 16, 1946, Harold married Lois Gould, and together they ran the farm and raised four children. They were married for 53 years. Harold was a lifelong dairy farmer, the fourth generation of Putnams on his dairy farm. He was innovative for his time, embracing change and adopting new technologies. He was a trustee of the Cambridge Cemetery Association at the Mountain View Cemetery in Cambridge for 50 years. He was on the board of directors for Richmond Cooperative Association, Inc., a milk marketing co-op. He was active in many other farm organizations as well. He was a deacon at the Cambridge United Church for many years.
Orman B. Ovitt, AG ’39, passed away the day before his 98th birthday on Sunday, March 31, 2013 at Franklin County Rehab in St. Albans, VT. Orman was born April 1, 1915 in Fairfield, VT, son of the late Silas and Rhoda (Chadwick) Ovitt. He graduated from BFA-Fairfax Class of 1936 and as valedictorian from Randolph Agricultural College, now Vermont Technical College. Orman married Ivy Webb in Fairfax on Nov. 3, 1940. After graduating from College he was head Herdsman at Fairlee Farms in Conn: providing milk to local hospitals and Yale College. Moving his family back to Vermont in 1942 and bought his first dairy farm. He built his life with Ivy in Fairfax raising their family and celebrating 65 years of marriage together before her death on June 22, 2006. Orman loved fishing with his sons, grandchildren and friends. He enjoyed auctions and auctioneering for fund raising events in the community. Orman and Ivy loved to travel and were able to take several trips. Orman was very proud of his many flowers and gardens, sharing his produce with friends and neighbors. Orman was a charter member of the Fairfax Volunteer Fire Dept. A member of the Lamoille Lodge #6 F and A.M., Mount Sinai Shriners and a member of the Lodge Council Chapter Scottish Rite Bodies in The Valley of Burlington; Fairfax United Church and the Fairfax Senior Citizens. He also served as a past president for both the Franklin County Board of Realtors and the National Farm & Land Institute.
James B. Walker, AG ‘39, passed away at the age of 91, on January 13, 2014 in Plant City, Florida. After graduating from Vermont Tech he was a dairy farmer in Benson, Vermont, maintaining a Century Farm. He left a wife of 20 years, Frances, 7 children, and currently has 2 great grandchildren attending Randolph.
Donald R. Tarbell, AG ‘40, of Belmont passed away on Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014, after a long illness. He was 94. Born in Healdville on November 16, 1919, Don was the son of Raymond C. and Vinnie (Shattuck) Tarbell. He was the third of six siblings in the Tarbell family. He attended Black River Academy and Vermont Technical College. He served in the Army Air Forces 1942-45, where he was assigned to the Air Transport Command and stationed at Recife, Brazil, a key base on the South Atlantic air ferry route to Africa and Europe. He assisted his brother Francis Tarbell on the family farm in Healdville and was employed on road crews of the town of Mount Holly. He served frequently as Road Commissioner for Mount Holly, and after that elected office was discontinued in 1974, as Road Foreman for the town. Following his retirement from full-time employment in 1982 he continued for many years to operate the town grader during the summer. The roads he built and maintained are still in use today. In 1960, Don married Geraldine (Marcotte) Manley, who predeceased him in 2002. The couple resided in Belmont, where Don served on the local beach committee and the Mechanicsville Cemetery Committee. He was a member of the American Legion Post 36 in Ludlow and belonged to the Village Baptist Church in Belmont. Deeply versed in the history of the town, Don was known for his accurate memory and lively story telling.
Frank R. Stafford, AG ‘41, age 91, passed away on May 30, 2014. At the time of his passing Frank and Virginia were being cared for by his daughter and son-in-law, Janice and Steven Lynch of Fairfax, Vermont. Frank Stafford was born January 27, 1923, in South Wallingford, the son of Roy H. and Mary (Gorton) Stafford, Frank attended school in Wallingford and graduated in 1944. He continued his education by enrolling in courses covering farm operation and graduated from Vermont Technical College. During the next 30 years Frank would carry on the family legacy by operating his farm bordering the Hartsboro Road in South Wallingford. His farm operation and practices qualified the farm as being one of the top Ayrshire Farms in Vermont. In 1950 he married Virginia Mae Hesse of Rutland, Vermont. They had two daughters, Connie Marie Stafford and Janice Ann (Stafford) Lynch. Frank and his family would continue to farm and participate in many agricultural shows and activities at the local, state, and national level until he retired from farming in 1973. He continued to share his love of the land and knowledge of farming as a salesman for Ground Products Division of Vermont Marble Company, Omya Incorporated, Shelburne Limestone and South Wallingford Limestone. In 1997 Frank retired as office manager at the quarry in South Wallingford. Frank served our farming community and his church by holding various offices and working on many committees. A few of these endeavors were: Member of the National Ayrshire Breed Association, charter member of the Rutland Natural Resources Conservation District, member and past master of the local Maple Valley Grange, as a member attained higher degrees at the regional, state and national level, served on the Wallingford School Board, Rutland County Farm Bureau, Justice of the Peace for Wallingford and served as Deacon, treasurer and member of the Business Committee managing the South Wallingford Church. While farming, he especially enjoyed participating in many regional Ayrshire cattle shows taking great pride as his animals received many awards and ribbons often showed by his daughters. He was an avid Red Sox and Boston Celtics fan. His flower beds brightened the lives of those who drove by and he was always willing to share the blessings he received with those in need. The Lord welcomed a truly great man that for his entire life walked, worked and lived next to us as a true Vermonter. He will always be remembered and remain an example of a person who lived every moment loving life. You could tell by his constant smile and the twinkle of his eyes that he enjoyed every challenge and viewed every day as an opportunity and a gift from God.
Chester Armstrong Damon, AG’45, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, October 23, 2012 at his residence surrounded by his loving family. He was born July 11, 1928 in Wakefield, RI, the son of Albert Willard and Barbara (Armstrong) Damon. Chester graduated with an Associate’s degree from both Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center, VT and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. With his son, Chester A. Damon, Jr., he owned and operated Damon’s Ridgely Farm in Stone Ridge, NY from 1978 to 1999. On October 1, 1949 in Sycamore, IL, he married Bonnie Irene Landon. Mrs. Damon survives him at home. Mr. Damon was a fifty year member and past master of the Hendrick Hudson Lodge #875 F.&A. Masons. For many years, he was a leader of the Dutchess County 4-H Baby Beef Club. Chester loved gardening, enjoyed the outdoors, and loved spending time with his family. The Hendrick Hudson Masonic Lodge conducted Masonic services at 7. A time of remembrance will follow and the interment will be private and at the convenience of the family.
Richard Mattison, AG ‘46, 85, of Shaftsbury died Monday, Oct. 6, 2014, at his residence. He was born May 16, 1929, in North Bennington, the son of the late Wendell and Anna (Niles) Mattison. Mr. Mattison received his education in North Bennington and graduated from Vermont Technical College in 1946. On Jan. 6, 1951, he married the former Lorraine Moriarty at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in North Bennington. For four years, he served in the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne. He served with Company B while stationed in Fort Bragg, N.C. After the service, Mr. and Mrs. Mattison returned to the area and purchased a farm in Shaftsbury, where they started a dairy farm. Mr. Mattison was employed at Polygraphic Printing Co. in North Bennington. He maintained both careers for 20 years. In 1972, the Mattisons purchased Iron Kettle Restaurant in Shaftsbury. The restaurant was sold in 1988. They began the process of cultivating and planting trees on their Shaftsbury property, which became Mattison Christmas Tree Farm that the family continues to operate
Charles Larson, AG '48, died August 29, 2013, at Rutland Regional Medical Center. He was born on September 24, 1928, in Proctor, the son of Carl E. and May (Hood) Larson. Mr. Larson graduated from Fair Haven High School and then, in 1948, from the Vermont School of Agriculture. He enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving during the Korean War until being honorably discharged in 1953. Mr. Larson married Evelyn Bushee on September 25, 1954, in Bennington, where he resided until retiring to Lake Bomoseen in 1993. He had always wanted to be a farmer and enjoyed working at the Stearns Farm in Hoosick, NY, while he was also employed by the Bennington Garage for 22 years and by Johnson Controls for 13 years, until his retirement in 1993. He was a member of the Crippen-Fellows American Legion in Castleton, where he had served as the chaplain; the Free and Accepted Masons Independence in Orwell; and was formerly a member of the Free and Accepted Masons Mount Anthony in Bennington, where he was a past master. Mr. Larson was an Eagle Scout and later was assistant Scout master for the Hoosick, NY, Troop.
Donald Pritchard, AG '48, died December 19, 2013. Donald was born on December 15, 1926, the only child of Gordon and Catherine (Hughes) Pritchard in Poultney, VT. He received his education at Poultney High School. He left school his senior year to serve his country as a Marine in World War II. After his service, he returned to complete his high school education. From there, he continued his education at the Vermont School of Agriculture. After graduation, he worked for Raytheon Corp. outside Boston, MA, where he met Alberta Jacques, and they were married July 5, 1958. He returned to Poultney and applied his Aggie School training, raising and operating a poultry business with his father. He then owned and operated a Service Master franchise for many years and enjoyed the people from all walks of life he met during those years. He also operated the Foundry Ice Cream Parlor in Poultney with his wife.
Ned N. Hayes, AG ‘49, age 86, died Friday, June 27, 2014, at Vermont Veterans Home in Bennington. He was born in Tinmouth on July 8, 1927, the son of Warren and Florence Rabtoy Hayes. Following graduation from Middletown Springs High School, he served in the U.S Army Air Force and then earned a degree in agriculture from Vermont Tech in Randolph. Mr. Hayes married Janice Gordon on June 6, 1992. In earlier years, he farmed and later operated a Mobil service station, worked in sales for a petroleum company and was a machine operator for General Electric. He enjoyed snowmobiling, fishing, hunting, coaching baseball, and was a Boston Red Sox fan.
Alfred McCoy, AG ‘49, passed away on October 8, 2013. He worked for Sullivan County 30 years. Before that he worked for 5 years for a private farm in Cornish, NH. He retired at age 75.
Amory C. “Doc” Smith, Ed.D, AG ‘50, died June 1, 2014 in Episcopal Church Home, in Louisville, KY., with his dancing partner and wife of 27 years, Betty Holzapfel (Wellendorff) Smith, and stepdaughter, Nancy W. Church, at his bedside. Amory was born July 2, 1931, to Eva and Merton Smith Sr., in East Bethel, Vt. Doc’s life defies definition with words. He was intensely patriotic, a great humorist, auctioneer, pilot, builder, musician, and lifelong educator in Vermont at South Royalton High School, South Burlington High School, and Burlington High Technical School. He was a Korean War veteran, member of the Melody Knights band, life member of the East Bethel Grange, as well as a proud Honorable Kentucky Colonel. Amory was president of the New England Adult Education Assoc.; Potentate of Mt. Sinai Shrine (1997), Montpelier; coordinator of 2000 census in Vermont; Chaplain, Secretary and Life Member of B.P.O.E. Lodge #916; and Chaplain and Life Member of V.F.W. Post #0094. Doc attended Vermont Technical College, University of Vermont, and Syracuse University where he earned his Doctor of Education degree in 1987. He married Betty Holzapfel of Louisville, Ky., and they made their home in South Burlington, Vt.
Hollis “Sonny” Edwards Jr., AG ‘51, of South Cambridge, VT, died at home on January 22, 2014, after a long illness, just down the road from the brick farmhouse where he was born 81 years ago on April 16, 1930. He was the son of Iola (Flanders) and Hollis Rae Edwards Sr. Sonny began school at the age of five, sometimes riding downhill to the one-room school on his sled. He attended high school at Cambridge High School. He graduated from the Vermont School of Agriculture (now VTC) in 1951, and was the sixth generation to own the family farm. During his lifetime, the farm changed from having Jerseys to Holsteins. The Edwards’ farm was the last working farm in South Cambridge. The owner of a distinctly dry sense of humor, he delighted in passing along the latest joke, or occasionally springing one on the unwary. An inveterate old Yankee farmer, Sonny could fix nearly anything with baler twine, duct tape, wire and hope. He was a member of the Vermont Farm Bureau for over 50 years, and served the Lamoille County Farm Bureau in many capacities. He received the Kieth Wallace award from the Vermont Farm Bureau in November 2011. He was very involved in the community. He served on the Lamoille County Reparative Board and Lamoille County Court Diversion, as well as the local Development Council and the town finance committee. He will be missed at Town Meeting for being willing to make motions and asking, “would someone please explain…” for his or others edification. In September 1985, he married Barbara Smith Collins.
Martin L. Harrington, AG ’51, died Monday, April 29, 2013, at his residence. He was born June 22, 1929, in Bennington, VT, the son of Silas and Doris (Briggs) Harrington. He was raised on the family farm and later moved to White Creek, NY, when his parents purchased a farm there. He received his early education in a one-room school in Shaftsbury, and later attended North Bennington High School. In 1951, he graduated from Vermont Technical College in Randolph. He married the former Mildred Ostrander on July 28, 1961. When the family farm was sold, he and his wife purchased Harrington's Country Store in Shaftsbury, VT, which they operated for 20 years. Following the sale of the store, he worked with his son to establish Marty's Sporting Goods Store in Bennington, VT. He served as the Shaftsbury representative in the Vermont State Legislature for three terms. He was a long-time member and Past Master of Tucker Lodge #38, F&AM in North Bennington, VT. In the early 1990's, he and his wife established the Southern Vermont Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, where he served as chairman for many years. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, and working on his property. Memorial services were held Saturday, May 4, 2013 at the North Bennington Baptist Church, with the Rev. David Jinno, pastor, officiating.
Delbert W. Palmer, AG ‘53, age 79, a lifelong resident of Waitsfield, passed away peacefully at his home in Waitsfield, Jan. 25, 2014, surrounded by his loving family and dog. Born Aug. 22, 1934, the only son of Everett and Kathryn Palmer, of Waitsfield, Delbert began his life on his family farm on the East warren Road in Waitsfield. He grew up working on the farm and helping with the production of maple syrup for the well-known family business. Delbert graduated from Waitsfield High School in 1951 and shortly after began his studies in agriculture at Vermont Technical College, where he graduated in 1953. On Oct. 25, 1958, he married his lifelong partner, Sharlia (Bohannon). He lived his life a short distance from his childhood residence with his wife and three children. As he welcomed his grandchildren into the world, they too lived within a short distance. In 1995, Delbert and his wife took over the six-generation family maple sugar business, Palmer Maple Products, that won prestigious awards and was known all over the world during its duration. He made sure the business had a large emphasis on family and all members had a specific job, no matter how young they were. He was a local meat cutter for 26 years and enjoyed interacting with the many community members that counted on his skill and attention to detail. He was well known for “running the roads,” looking for someone to talk to in town, as his wife never really knew his exact location. Whether a conversation over coffee, or a meeting at the fire station, he enjoyed talking with others within his community. He never missed an opportunity to help others and would respond quickly, even if he had to get there with red light flashing and siren blasting. His heart was dedicated to serving the community of the Mad River Valley. He joined the Waitsfield Fire Department at age 17 and dedicated 62 years of service, 23 of those years as chief. Delbert was instrumental in encouraging women to join the fire department, having had both daughters part of the department. Further down the road his granddaughter Shannon and his grandson Jared joined the department. He was so proud of the men and women that he worked and served with on the fire department. Delbert also served on the Mad River Valley Ambulance as a driver for 25 years and was fire warden for 25 years. Delbert was a loving husband, father and grandfather, who really enjoyed helping to raise his grandchildren by enriching their lives. Not a day would go by where he didn’t think of or see his grandchildren who all live on the “hill”.
Francis Tenney, AG ‘54, of Tenney Road, passed away Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012, at the Rowan Court Health and Rehabilitation Center in Barre, VT, with his family at his bedside. Born in Barre, VT on Nov. 8, 1935, he was the son of the late Fred M. and Doris Y. (LeClair) Tenney. Francis attended elementary school, Spaulding High School in Barre, Vt and Vermont Technical College. After his schooling, he served his country in the U.S. Army from 1957 to 1959. After the service, he resided in Enosburg, VT and later moved to Barre, VT, where he was employed at Northfield Wood Products, and then Ethan Allen Wood Products in Randolph, VT, where he retired in 2002. In 1962, he married Joan Jerry. The couple made their home in East Roxbury, where they raised their family. He was a member of Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church in Randolph and the Knights of Columbus, third degree. A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012, in St. Monica Catholic Church in Barre, VT. Burial with military honors was held Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012, in the Vermont Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Randolph Center, VT.
William A. Duff, HT ‘59, 73, of Woodbury, died on Thursday, Dec. 3, 2012. He was the husband of Suzanne (Barley) Duff. Mr. Duff was born Sept. 18, 1939, in Williamstown, VT, son of the late Richard and Madeline (Taylor) Duff, and had resided in Woodbury for many years. He retired from the State of Connecticut Department of Transportation after 36 years of service. Mr. Duff was also a founding member of the Woodbury Ambulance Association. He was an active EMT for 40 years and remained as an associate member. He was an avid New York Yankees fan as well as a UCONN Huskies basketball fan. He loved to travel and take cruises.
David Berry, EET '60, died November 19, 2013, at the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center. David was born in St. Albans on May 1, 1935; he was the only child born to Ralph and Eunice (Dunton) Berry. He grew up in St. Albans, graduating from Bellows Free Academy. He entered the Navy, where he served in the Mediterranean aboard the USS Achernar. Following his discharge, he attended Vermont Agricultural & Technical Institute, where he received a degree in electronics. David married the former Jo Stroffoleno on September 24, 1960. David had worked with electronics throughout his life at Tansitor Electronics and Jard, Inc., and retired from Northern Lights Fiber Optic. He was a member of the Mt. Anthony Lodge F&AM, a supporter of the Shriners and he was also a member of the NRA.
John Curtis, Sr., HT '60, died July 26, 2013, in Rutland. He was born August 12, 1940, in Proctor, VT, the son of Adrian A. and Carmen (Marfuggi) Curtis. He is survived by his wife and friend Judy Divine Curtis; by his four wonderful children, John Curtis Jr., Jeffrey Curtis, Christopher Curtis and Julie Hayward; by nine beautiful grandchildren, who were his pride and joy, and one great-grandson, James; by his brothers, Robert Curtis and Albert Curtis; and by many nieces, nephews and cousins. He was a 4th degree member of the Knights of Columbus and Past Grand Knight of Housatonic Council #40 in New Milford, CT. He was a member of the Rutland Elks Lodge #345. John was a 1958 graduate of Proctor High School. He then worked for the state of Connecticut as a transportation planner for 35 years, retiring in 1995. Upon retirement, John and Judy roamed the country in a recreational vehicle for 12 years.
Nelson K. Jacobs, HT ‘60, age 74, of Prospect, passed away Thursday, May 8, 2014, at the St. Mary’s Hospital VITAS Unit with his family by his side. He was the devoted husband of Carmen Beasley Jacobs. Mr. Jacobs was born March 16, 1940, in Wilmington, Vt., a son of the late Gordon Frank and Dulcena Smith Jacobs. He graduated from Wilmington High School and Vermont Technical College in Randolph, Vt. He worked for the State of Connecticut Department of Transportation as a Civil Engineer, retiring in 1997 after 36 years of service. Jake enjoyed hunting, fishing, country music, dancing, kicking up his heels, and his camps in New York and Vermont, but most of all he enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. He was a member of the N.R.A. and a founding member of the Prospect Gun Club. Mr. Jacobs proudly served his country in the Army National Guard from 1963 to 1969. He was a member of the American Legion in Adams, N.Y. and was very active with the Prospect V.F.W.
Edwin Murray, EET '60, died August 22, 2013, at Vassar Brothers Medical Center. Born in Northfield, VT, on August 16, 1935, he was the son of the late Sheldon K. and Maidene Murray. Edwin proudly served our country in the United States Air Force and graduated from Vermont Agricultural & Technical Institute. On August 24, 1963, he married his wife Lucinda. He was employed with IBM for over 30 years and enjoyed retired life at home with his wife and family.
Robert G. Russ, HT ‘60, age 75, of Vinton, VA, went to be with his savior while in Okeechobee, Florida on Monday, July 21, 2014. He was a loving husband, father and grandfather, always putting his family first. When he and his wife retired, they enjoyed traveling in their RV, visiting 49 states. Okeechobee, Florida became their favorite spot to spend the winter months. He enjoyed NASCAR and attended races at many of the different tracks. A more loyal fan of the New York Yankees and the Washington Redskins could not be found. Fishing, woodworking, reading, and tending to his flower garden were a few of his favorite pastimes. Bob was a 1960 graduate of Vermont Tech in Randolph, VT. He moved to Virginia in 1960 and began his career for the Dept. of Highway and worked in 1970 for E.F. Blankenship Co. as Construction Superintendent. He also worked for Pendleton Construction Co. and retired from English Construction Co. in 2000 after 30 years in the business. He was a member of Thrasher Memorial United Methodist Church. He was the son of the late Ned and Nelda Russ.
Kenneth W. Schwenn, EET ‘63, age 70, died Thursday, April 24, 2014, at home, following a long battle with COPD and lung cancer. He was born May 25, 1943, in Brooklyn, N.Y., the son of Carl W. Schwenn and Marie M. (Harrison) Schwenn. Ken moved to Vermont in 1957 and graduated from Essex Junction High School in 1961. He went on to attend the Wentworth Institute in Boston and graduated in 1963 with an Associate’s Degree in Electronics from Vermont Technical College. In 1963, he joined the IBM Corp. in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., as an electronics technician. In 1964, he took a leave from IBM and joined the Vermont Army Guard and was trained as a radar repairman. While stationed in Fort Monmouth, N.J., he married the love of his life, Elizabeth (Marcoux) Schwenn on Dec. 19, 1964. After leaving active service, they moved back to East Fishkill, N.Y., and transferred back to Vermont in 1965. Settling in Milton, they raised two beautiful, smart and talented daughters. Ken worked for IBM his entire career holding many different positions in engineering – management and technical staff – until his retirement on Jan. 31, 2002, with more than 38 years of service. He often remarked that he really hadn’t gone far – as his last office was no more than 50 feet from where he had his first summer job for IBM in 1961. Ken had a lifelong passion for machinery, tools and making and building things. Along the way, he had many sideline businesses from excavating to a welding and machine shop. He was especially proud of his shop where he built custom trailers, wood splitters, and did all manner of rebuilds and repairs on machinery. He also operated a portable saw mill. For a while, he had a gun dealership. Ken fulfilled a lifelong dream when he earned a private pilot license in 1985 followed by an instrument rating in 1988. Sadly, deteriorating health grounded him in 1989. After retirement, he continued building things for family and generally acted as “Mr. Fix-It” for the family. He also continued his hobby of antique radios and electronic equipment. He was an avid reader, reading up to five novels a week. He enjoyed the fellowship of his friends at his monthly PJ Breakfast Group and Lunch Brunch of co-workers and retirees from IBM. Both Ken and Liz appreciated the kind and compassionate care that Dr. Thomas Paterson and Joanne Hunt – A.P.R.N. gave to Ken during his last few weeks. They also would like to thank the entire staff of the VNA Hospice Program for their support and concern.
Ralph H. Burrington, HT ‘64, formerly of East Burke, VT., passed away July 22, 2014, in Palmer, Texas at the age of 71. Ralph was born June 26, 1943, to Pete and Arlene (Batchelder) Burrington in Lyndonville. He attended Lyndon Institute and received degrees from Vermont Technical College and Northeastern University. Ralph filled his career surveying and bridge and road engineering in Vermont, Texas, South Carolina, Florida, St. Thomas, and Puerto Rico.
Edward Proulx, MEC '64, died August 5, 2013, following a courageous battle with cancer. He was born on November 19, 1942, in Barre. He graduated from Marian High School in 1960, and Vermont Technical College in 1964. Ed had a 40-year career as a mechanical engineering designer at General Electric/Dynamics.
Jan Olson Floyd, MEC ’65, peacefully passed away on Monday, July 1, 2013 at her home following a courageous battle with cancer. To many Jan was known as an avid horsewoman and a storekeeper. She was also a gifted artist, painting the sign in front of the store and illustrating a book about side-saddle riding for beginners. She also loved sewing special hunting vests for her grandsons, including a special matching vest for a beloved stuffed bear. During her 15-year battle with breast cancer, Jan also became the first person many sought out when they or a family member was diagnosed. It was her strength, grace and courage in facing this disease head-on that so many drew strength from and even more stood in awe of. She will be remembered by everyone who ever met her as the sparkling eyes and genuine smile behind the counter, the welcoming laugh rocking on the front porch, and one of the first people to arrive to help when a family was facing a crisis. Born to Albert and Laura Olson in Vergennes, VT on August 27, 1945, Jan was known around town as a talented artist and a horse obsessed girl who would gladly do barn chores for the privilege of riding a horse. Jan graduated in 1963 from Vergennes Union High School and went on to Vermont Technical College that fall, where she was one of the first 3 women to attend the college. After graduating in 1965 with a degree in Mechanical Engineering Jan worked for several engineering firms, the final being Webster-Martin in South Burlington, VT. On June 28, 1969, Jan married Albert Floyd, who she met and fell in love with while at VTC. Jan realized her true life’s dream when she and Al made their home at the U.V.M Morgan Horse Farm in Weybridge, Vermont. During their years at the horse farm Jan rode almost daily, taking a little time off to have her two daughters Bridget and Jill. While at the farm, Jan was filmed by Disney for the opening sequence of the movie Justin Morgan Had a Horse. She even learned to ride side-saddle, eventually becoming a world-renowned side-saddle rider, instructor and judge. In 1979 Al and Jan moved their family to Randolph Center to take over the family general store from Al’s parents. Jan continued to ride almost daily, using the horses of family friends. She even continued to ride side-saddle, which she did for many, many years in the annual Randolph Fourth of July parade. Jan is survived by her husband, Albert J. Floyd, AG’65, of Randolph Center; her daughters Bridget (Calacci) and Jill (O’Connor); Sons-in-law Matt Calacci and Joe O’Connor; and the two lights of her life, grandsons Brennan and Skylar Calacci. Jan is also survived by her brother Stan Olson of Newport, RI, and sister Kristina Kilburn, and brother in law Robert Kilburn, of Fair Haven, VT. Jan was predeceased by her parents, Albert and Laura Olson, and her brother James Olson. A celebration of Jan’s life will be held on Saturday, July 13 from 11-2 pm at Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center in the Campus Center. Jan loved to be comfortable, so in her honor this is a casual attire event. Please come, share your stories, laughter and tears. Burial will be held at a later date, privately, at the family’s convenience. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Visiting Nurse & Hospice of VT & NH; PO Box 976; White River Jct., VT 05001, those wonderful nurses were a gift at our greatest time of need.
David Nelson, MEC ’66, died January 8 at Central Vermont Medical Center. Born on Dec. 11, 1957, in Columbus, Ga., he was the son of Theodore Roosevelt and Sandra Jean (Colombo) Nelson. He attended elementary school in North Walpole. NH, and graduated from Spaulding High School in Barre in 1975. He went on to attend Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center. On Dec. 15, 1979, David and Darleen married in East Barre. Following their marriage, they made their home in Orange, MA, and later returned to South Barre, VT. In 1997, they moved to their present home on Overland Avenue in Barre. For over 30 years, David worked for Huntington Homes Inc. in Berlin and East Montpelier, first as a draftsman and later as an engineering manager. A member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Barre, VT, he taught catechism classes for several years and ran the religious store in the basement of the church on Sundays. David enjoyed riding his Harley-Davidson motorcycle and tinkering on classic sports cars and was an auto enthusiast. He also liked to travel.
Tony J. Cosentino, HT ‘67, age 66, died May 31, 2014, at his home. He was born in Rutland, June 2, 1947, son of Anthony and Romalda (Delliveneri) Cosentino. Tony was a graduate of Mount St. Joseph Academy and Vermont Technical College.
Robert M. Pietryka, MEC ’67, died at home, on Friday, December 14, 2012 after a long battle with cancer. Bob was born in Rutland, VT, to John and Eva (Pentkowski) Pietryka. He married Esther Carlson on May 17, 1969, in West Rutland, VT. Bob graduated from West Rutland High, and Vermont Technical College, where he played basketball on a State Championship high school team and two championships at VTC, scoring over 1,000. Bob is a veteran, serving in the USAF for four years from 1967-1971 He spent 18 months in Okinawa and Thailand and was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal. He worked for Tambrands Inc. in Three Rivers, MA from 1971 to 1998. From 1998 to 2004 Bob worked at First Quality Products Inc. in McElhatten, PA. Bob enjoyed hunting, golfing and fishing. He belonged to the American Legion Post 87, West Rutland, VT for 39 years, and Vietnam Veterans of America, of Rutland, VT. He also was a member of the Knights of Columbus. The Funeral Service was held on Monday, December 17 at 10 a.m. from the funeral home followed by a Mass at St. Cecilia's Church at 11:00 a.m. Burial followed at the Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Springfield, MA.
Lawrence Townsend, EET '67, died June 29, 2013, following a courageous battle with cancer. He was born June 10, 1947, in Bethel, the son of Dwight H. and Thelga (Stoddard) Townsend. Larry graduated from Braintree-Randolph High School, and received an associate degree from Vermont Technical College. He served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, and was married to Judith A. Braun in Randolph on December 5, 1975. Larry had worked for General Electric in Pittsfield, MA, then for the Randolph Post Office from 1974 to 2003, and Onion Flats from 2003 to 2005. He then worked for Clear Source and Endyne, Inc. He had served in the Vermont House of Representatives since 2008. He served several terms on the Randolph Select board and Randolph High School board. He was a member of the Randolph Village Fire Department for 12 years.
Ralph F. Tassie, EET ‘68, age 67, passed away at home March 5, 2014, after a long illness. Ralph was born Aug. 14, 1946, in Hartford, Conn. At age 3, his family moved to Montpelier, after his father’s sudden death. Ralph graduated from St. Michael’s High School in 1965 and Vermont Technical College in 1968. He continued his education while working for IBM taking many classes at the University of Vermont. He married Elizabeth “Betty” Perry on Nov. 26, 1966. She was the love of his life. They enjoyed a wonderful life together traveling around the U.S. and a backpacking trip through Europe. They adopted their daughter, Heather Lynn, when she was 12 days old in April 1980. Ralph and Betty introduced her to camping when she was a few months old. Ralph began a 39 year career with IBM as a technician, engineer and manager based in Essex Junction. He enjoyed business travel to many states, Canada and Europe and temporary assignments to New York, Virginia and Florida, retiring in 2007. From an early age, Ralph enjoyed hunting, fishing, biking, hiking, and boating. He loved shark tagging in Maine with his buddies, Jack and Steve. Playing golf with friends and especially Christi was a major Florida pastime. After retirement, Ralph and Betty bought a motor home and travelled up and down the East Coast with future plans to drive across the U.S. as they had done in the 1970s. They sold their home of over 20 years in Essex Junction and bought another in Ruskin, Fla., continuing to drive back to Vermont to live in the motor home for the summer and be near their daughter, Heather and granddaughter.
Michael Pillarella, EET ‘69, age 66, husband of Valerie (Ross) Pillarella, entered into rest Tuesday, March 15, 2016. The founder of EMI Electrical Contractors Inc. and the Owner, Director and Instructor of Pillarella School of Electrical Code & Theory, Michael earned a Masters Degree in Education from Bridgewater State College, a Bachelor of Science, Industrial Arts from Fitchburg State College and Associates Degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering Technology from Vermont Technical College. He was past-president and Educational Chairman of the Roger Williams Chapter of the International Association of Electrical Inspectors, also the past-president of the Bristol County Chapter of the Massachusetts Electrical Contractors Association. Michael was also a lifetime member of the National Educational Association and a Member of the Institute for the Certification of Engineering Technicians. Michael held electrical licenses in MA, RI, VT, NH and Maine. He held educational licenses in four distinct areas, Superintendent/Director, Vocational Education, Department Head and Secondary Principal.
Michael served as an Instructor at the Massachusetts Fire Academy focusing on Electrical Safety, Fire and Arson investigation. In the town of Freetown, where he lived for over forty years he served seventeen years as an Emergency Medical Technician, Firefighter, ending this portion of his career as Fire Chief. In additional service to our communities Michael served as a Wiring Inspector in the Towns of Freetown and Swansea. He also served as the Chairman of the Freetown Water Department.
William C. Ryan, AG ’70, a lifelong resident of Craftsbury Common, VT, died peacefully Friday, Oct. 5, 2012, in Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington, VT, with his beloved family at his side. He is survived by his wife, Carolyn Ryan of Craftsbury Common,VT; daughters, Alison Blaney and husband, Thomas, of Craftsbury, VT, and Jenapher Hipkiss and husband, Seneca, of Exeter, NH; grandchildren, Mackenzie and Ryan Blaney; and brothers and sisters. The funeral services were held on Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2012, with the Rev. Alan Parker officiating.
Charles Van Cor Jr. MEC ‘70, age 40, died Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014 from injuries sustained in a roll-over accident in Lexington, Mass. He drove tractor trailer trucks of all shapes and sizes for 17 years. He drove flat bed, reefer trailer, tank, and doubles. This is what he liked to do. He drove in over 35 different states, and delivered just about anything you might need in your house from cleaning supplies to food, furniture, and mail. Chuck was an avid model builder, belonging to three different model groups in N.H. (Upper Valley Model Club, Granite State Modelers, and the Ship Model Guild at DHMC. He built cars, trucks, tanks, but his favorite was WWII class warships. He also was involved with Boy Scout Troop #279, and was former Scout Master for Pack #279, both of Lebanon, NH. Every year, both of his hobbies would merge, and with the help of the Upper Valley Model Club, he would introduce scouts to model building. Chuck loved animals and they loved him, but his greatest love of all was his family. He was born March 2, 1974, in Berlin, VT to Charles Eugene Van Cor Sr. and Linda (Largo) Van Cor, and grew up in Randolph, VT, where he graduated high school in 1992. He went to Champlain College, and Vermont Technical College, before getting his commercial driver’s license in 1997. In the summer of 1994, he met his wife of almost 17 years Stacey A. (Mooney) Van Cor and moved to Lebanon in 1995. They were married in East Concord, N.H. on September 27, 1997. In 2000, Chuck and Stacey welcomed the birth of their twin boys, Charles Eugene Van Cor III and Johnathan Allen Van Cor. They meant everything in the world to him. He took his family with him on the road whenever the opportunity arose.
Stanley R. Cutts, AG ‘71, age 68, of Troy and formerly of Randolph, Vt., died peacefully June 5, 2014, in the comfort of his home with his family near after a period of failing health. He was born in Brattleboro, May 12, 1946, son of the late Esther (Coulter) and Revel Cutts. He was educated in Townshend, Vt., and graduated from Leland & Gray High School in 1964. Soon after graduation he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. He served during the Vietnam War as a radio operator. He was honorably discharged at the rank of sergeant-E4 after four years of loyal service. After his enlistment he went on with his education and graduated from Vermont Technical College and the University of Vermont with a bachelor’s degree in business management. On May 26, 1973, Mr. Cutts exchanged vows with Lynda J. Larocque at S.S. Donatian and Rogatian Church in Randolph. They were married with family and friends in attendance and had been together for 44 years. Mr. Cutts worked as a carpenter for 40 years before retiring in 2010. He had faith by being with family and nature. He believed in hard work and family values. He loved to travel and was an avid outdoorsman and spent a lot of time in the woods hunting, fishing, cutting wood, cultivating his vegetable garden, restoring fields, riding his all-terrain vehicle and raising his small heard of beef cows. He was very passionate about umpiring in the softball leagues for men’s and women’s associations in New Hampshire and Vermont with his primary focus being the Greater Keene Men’s and Women’s Leagues. He was very passionate about the Vermont Wood Bat Softball Tournament, which he was instrumental in establishing and held for over 10 years in Chester, Vt. He was also a big Red Sox fan.
Anthony Lafayette, ABT ‘71, passed away peacefully on Friday, Dec. 7, 2012, surrounded by his family, after participating in one final game of cribbage. He fought a courageous battle with cancer. Tony was a graduate of Rice Memorial High School and Vermont Technical College. He loved sports, playing baseball and basketball in high school and collegiately. He passed on this knowledge, coaching countless youth teams through Little League, CYO and Parks and Rec. Additional accomplishments include, retiring as the career leader in assists at VTC, pitching a no-hitter in men's softball, hitting a hole-in-one at Williston Country Club, and induction into the Vermont Softball Hall of Fame. He remained a lifelong Burlingtonian, a city in which he took great pride and started a family. Tony will be remembered for his incredible devotion to his family and the local community. He was an active board member at The Boys and Girls Club and The Burlington International Games. As founder of Lafayette Real Estate, he enjoyed nothing more than managing his apartments, meeting new people and discussing the next business deal. Never one to forget a face or without a moment to stop and chat, he rarely left home without brightening someone else's day. In later years, he was a self-proclaimed fishing addict, always discussing "the one that got away." A perfect night would be spent with friends and family playing cards, pool and ping pong. A Mass a Christian Burial was celebrated on Monday, Dec. 10, 2012, at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Burlington, VT, with burial at a later date.
Douglas Devoid, AG '72, died December 10, 2013, following a courageous battle with cancer. He was born March 28, 1952, and lived the majority of his life in Hinesburg, attending CVU where he was an awarded athlete, and later went on to receive his associate degree at Vermont Technical College. Doug worked in the auto industry from the time he was 18, including a period of time working on a pit crew for the NASCAR North series. Doug ultimately purchased Dave’s Automotive in South Burlington.
Gerry Lapan, EET ‘72, passed away on June 6, 2014. Gerry worked for New England Telephone, AT&T, and Lucent as a product manager, retiring after 30 years with the combined companies. Gerry leaves his wife of 43 years, Ginny, 2 daughters and 3 grand children.
Mark Ward, CET '72, died November 16, 2013, following a courageous battle with cancer. He was born May 7, 1952, in Burlington, the son of Martha and Clifford Ward. Mark created his highly successful business, The Vermont Land Surveying Co.
Michael D. Carpenter, CET ‘74, of Harvest Road died suddenly on Tuesday, Jan. 22, at Concord Hospital. He was born in Barre, VT, son of the late Walter and Dorothy (Farnham) Carpenter. He was a graduate of Northfield, VT, High School and Vermont Tech. Michael worked as an engineer for Scanada in Bow for several years. He enjoyed hunting, NASCAR, and was an avid collector. Most of all, he enjoyed spending time with his wife, daughters and granddaughter. Funeral services were held on Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 10 a.m. in the Chapel of the Waters Funeral Home. Also a celebration of his life was held at Grace Capital Church in February.
Brian Morrisseau, EM ‘75, age 59, formerly of Montpelier died in the early morning hours on April 11, 2015, in Dekalb County, Georgia. Born October 22, 1955, in Burlington, Vermont, he was the son of John Morrisseau and Dorothy Morrisseau (Peck). He was a graduate of Vermont Technical College and worked at the local cable company for 30 years. He was married to Melody Ingalls (Peatman) from 1986 to 2003. He was active in hockey, softball, model airplanes, and enjoyed playing golf and guitar.
Linda Hull, AMT ‘76, age 62, died peacefully at her winter home in Port Charlotte, Fla., on Thursday, April 17. Born Jan. 4, 1952, she attended Hartland Elementary School and Hartford High School and graduated from Vermont Technical College. She had worked for Vermont Castings and retired from Pepin Granite of Barre. She had lived in Pomfret, South Royalton, Hartland, Randolph and many happy years in Woodbury with her husband, Chip Chaffee II. She enjoyed golfing, hunting, fishing, and just being outdoors.
Clifton F. Langmaid, AMT ‘76, age 59, of North Danville, died Thursday Aug. 7, 2014, just before evening chores, at Northeastern VT Regional Hospital in St. Johnsbury following a courageous battle with F-ALS. He was born April 17, 1955, in St. Johnsbury, the only son of Forrest and Clara (McGill) Langmaid. In 1974 Clif graduated from Danville High School and in 1976 he graduated from Vermont Technical College with an associate’s degree in agriculture. Clif owned and operated the farm in North Danville village for over 30 years being the sixth generation on that farm. He bred and raised high quality Registered Holstein cattle and received the Master Breeders Award from the Holstein Association in 2014. He also received the Century Farm Award from the Vermont Farm Bureau/Grange organization. Clif made it his personal mission to raise awareness and funds for ALS research in order to find the cure for this devastating disease. Besides operating his farm, he built the Apple Log Lodge at the Curtis Vance Memorial Orchard in N. Danville where many community functions are held. He enjoyed family cruises and working on the Apple Log Lodge with family and friends.
Michael Garofano, CET ’77, was 55 years old when he died on August 28, 2011 protecting the integrity of his water treatment facility in Rutland City, VT. He was a hometown boy; born in Rutland, grew up in Rutland and went to college at Vermont Technical College (VTC) in Randolph, VT and went back to Rutland after graduation. He started work for the City of Rutland in 1981 and worked his way up to through the Public Works Department and became the Water Treatment and Resource Manager. Michael was self-directed and conscientious. Close enough was not good enough. He was dedicated to his family and to his treatment facility. He was practical and could fix anything. Michael was part operator, part mechanic, part electrician, and part instrumentation engineer. He had a great sense of humor. He was called out at all times of the night and on weekends to do whatever was necessary to insure safe drinking water reached his customers. Michael performed heroic tasks that no one else ever knew about. Why did he perform these tasks? Because they had to be done. Michael is survived by his wife Sally and his son Tom as well as his two brothers and three sisters.
Bruce G. Charland, CET ‘79, age 55 passed away peacefully in his home while surrounded by family and friends on June 21. Bruce bravely and courageously battled cancer for over 6 years with his loving and supporting wife, Debra (Collins) Charland, and countless family and friends by his side every step of the way. He was born and raised in Bethlehem to Arnold and Lois (Lang) Charland on October 18, 1958. He attended Littleton High School and graduated with the class of 1976. A few years later he graduated from Vermont Technical College as a Civil Engineer Technician. He was a dedicated employee for the State of N.H. for almost 33 years before retiring in January 2012. He enjoyed spending time with his family, especially his two precious grandsons who were his pride and joy. He also enjoyed NASCAR racing, camping with family and friends and spending quality time with his buddies at the sugarhouse. He loved to putter around the house and always made sure the grounds were well maintained and pleasing to the eye. He always had many different projects going on, and loved to build and fix anything and everything. He spent countless hours working with his automobiles.
Michael J. Miller, EET ’80, of Sunset Road, passed away Sunday, May 26, 2013, at his home. Born July 10, 1960, in Barre, VT, he was the son of Osmond H. and Phyllis J. (Page) Miller. He attended Barre Town School and graduated from Spaulding High School in Barre, VT in 1978. Later, he received his associate degree in electrical engineering from Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center. Currently, he was working toward a business management degree from the University of Maryland. On July 23, 1983, Michael married Sherry L. Messier in Graniteville. They made their home in Graniteville for over 15 years before moving to Sunset Road. In his earlier years, he worked for Data General in Portsmouth, NH, and Mitel Semiconductors in South Burlington. For over 25 years, he worked for Suss MicroTec in Waterbury Center and was promoted to vice president of operations. Michael was a member of the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Barre, VT. For many years, he was involved with the Barre Youth Sports Association and helped in preparing and maintaining the North Barre ice skating rink. His goal every year was to try to have the rink ready for skating by Christmas morning. His other interests included hunting, fishing, gardening, building birdhouses and Adirondack chairs, caring for his home and property, landscaping and snowmobiling. He especially enjoyed time spent with his family. His funeral service was held Friday, May 31, 2013, at 1 p.m. in the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Barre, VT.
Edward Huntley, CET & ST ‘81, 58, passed away peacefully on Saturday, January 30, 2016 at Baystate Medical Hospital from complications with Primary CNS Lymphoma. Ned was born in Northampton and is the son of Almer (Bud) Huntley and mother Enid Johnson.
William Valley, EET '81, died in July 2013. Born April 29, 1960, in St. Johnsbury, he was the son of Clyde W. and Evelyn (Bartlett) Valley. He attended local Barre schools and was a graduate of Spaulding High School and Vermont Technical College. Until his recent retirement, he had been employed by IBM, the Vermont Bobbin Co. and Cabot Creamery.
Robert M. Walker, CET ’87, of Fairview Street, died Thursday night, March 21, 2013, at Central Vermont Medical Center in Berlin, VT. Born Aug. 17, 1939, in Barre, VT, he was the son of Gerald R. and Mary (Mur-ray) Walker. He attended Barre schools and graduated from Spaulding High School in 1957. He later attended Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center. On Sept. 10, 1966, he married Gail" Graham in Barre, VT, where they had since resided. Bob was a longtime employee as a civil technician in the right-of-way division of the state of Vermont Highway Department, especially in the formulation of the interstate highway system. He retired in 1997 because of his health, after more than 30 years of service. He was a longtime base-ball coach from Little League through the American Legion baseball pro-gram in the Barre area. Bob was an avid New York Yankees baseball fan and statistician for his children's various athletic teams and will be long remembered for his positive impact on Barre Youth Sports. His memberships included the Barre American Legion Post 10 and the Bane Elks Lodge 1535. Bob’s funeral was held Wednesday, March 27, 2013, at 11 a.m. in the Hooker and Whitcomb Funeral Home.
James Foster, AGR '90, died as the result of a farming accident on Sept. 21, 2017. He was born Jan. 29, 1970 in Middlebury, the son of James and Joyce (Warner) Foster. Foster was a graduate of Middlebury Union High School class of 1988 and received his Associates degree in Ag Business Management from Vermont Technical College in 1990. He furthered his education at Kansas State University and received his Bachelor’s of Science Degree in animal science in 1992. He married Tricia Eastwood on Oct. 9, 1993 at the Middlebury Congregational Church. Foster was an owner of Vermont Natural Ag Products and Foster Brothers Farm in Middlebury. He was a dedicated husband and father whose values of integrity guided him each day. He was a humble and kind leader on the Addison County Fair and Field Days board, the Vermont FFA Foundation and the Central Cemetery Association. He is survived by his wife Tricia of Middlebury, by his parents James and Joyce Foster of Middlebury, his children, MaKayla, Caleb and Jocelyn Foster all of Middlebury, by his sister Karen Foster-Baccei and husband David of Middlebury, by his brother Mark Foster and wife Nicole of Middlebury. Also by his aunts and uncles, Robert and Nancy Foster, Judith and Bill Roy, Sharon and Robert Chalecki, Dorothy and former Gov. James Douglas, Joyce and David Wetmore, Linda and Craig L’Heureux and Bettee and Keith LeBeau, also by his nieces, Ashlynn Foster, Tatum Eastwood and Remy Eastwood, by his nephew, Colin Foster, and his god daughter Mackenzie LeBeau.
Kathryn M. (Russo) Yager, VET ‘94, of No. Fayston, VT, and Lancaster, died on Wednesday, March 6, with her family at her side in her childhood Lancaster, MA home after almost eight years battling brain cancer. Mrs. Yager leaves her husband of 16 years, Andrew H. Yager of North Fayston, VT. For her last seven months, Mrs. Yager resided in her parents' home in Lancaster, MA. Mrs. Yager was raised in Lancaster, MA, attended local schools and graduated from Nashoba Regional High School, Class of 1987. After graduation, she attended Nichols College until her path took her to Burlington, VT, (ski territory) with Tamar Lederman, a close friend and classmate. While residing in Vermont, she earned an associate's degree in veterinary technology from Vermont Technical College in 1994 and became a certified veterinary technician (CVT). She completed her bachelor's degree in animal science at the University of Vermont in May of 1996. She worked for several years as a veterinary technologist with the Office of Animal Care Management at UVM before being promoted to business manager. She completed all of the certifications offered by the American Association of Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) through "Registered Laboratory Animal Technologist" (RLATg). She was a member of the Vermont Association of Veterinary Technicians and was very active in the regional branch of AALAS, called the Northern Mountain Branch. Following cremation, a funeral Mass was held on Wednesday, March 13, at Immaculate Conception Church, 809 Main St., Lancaster, MA.
Ruth S. Beard, RHT ‘96, age 66, wife of William S. Beard, mother of Daniel D. Beard and Rachel (Beard) Keast, died at her home surrounded by her family on Oct. 29, 2014. She was born Aug. 25, 1948, to Thomas W. Sykas and Ruth E. (Woodward) Sykas. She grew up with her four siblings, Anna Sykas, Elizabeth Sykas-Ringgenberg, Thomas W. Sykas and Timothy D. Sykas. She devoted her life to the service of others. She cared for her mother, her children, her cherished grandchildren, her siblings and her nieces and nephews. She hosted her beloved exchange student, Manue, from Spain. She provided refuge for strangers in need. She loved her dog Fargo, flying, hot air ballooning, riding her motorcycle and playing the cello. Ruth loved singing in the choir with her husband. Together they visited many interesting places around the world. She worked tirelessly to promote car seat safety and the inclusion of those with disabilities. She graduated from Montpelier High School in 1966. She went on to study nursing and graduated in 1969 from The Memorial Hospital School of Nursing, Worcester, Massachusetts. She married her husband, Bill, that same year and began her first career as a maternity nurse at the Leonard Morse maternity ward in Natick, Massachusetts. She continued her work at Lowell General Hospital, Lowell, Massachusetts, Copley Hospital in Morrisville, and Central Vermont Hospital in Berlin. She left full-time nursing with the arrival of her son, Daniel, and later her daughter, Rachel. However, she continued to care for people in new roles such as camp nurse at Camp Wihakowi, Lamaze instruction and as a special education aide for the Montpelier Public Schools system. She also cut bread for her friends at the Manghis’ bakery. She continued her education with degrees from St. Joseph’s College in North Windham, Maine, and Vermont Technical College. She earned her master’s degree in speech and language pathology from the University of Vermont in 2001. This allowed her to start her second career in speech pathology and assistive technology. She began working at the Family Center of Washington County, where she was able to provide support and care for the children she loved so much. She was an active and dynamic member of the Christ Episcopal Church. She sang in the choir and served in ways to many to list.
Jesse Boardman, LAH '98, died unexpectedly Tuesday, February 18, 2014, at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH, from complications due to bacterial meningitis. Jesse was born August 18, 1977, at Central Vermont Hospital in Berlin, VT, the son of Douglas K. and Joan E. (Nichols) Boardman. He grew up on Upper Village Road in Chelsea and attended Chelsea schools, graduating from Chelsea High School in 1995. In 1998, Jesse graduated from Vermont Technical College in Randolph Center with a degree in landscape development and ornamental horticulture. He later returned to VTC for further studies. Jesse’s employment included positions at Vermont Butter and Cheese Co., Paragon Construction, Bombardier Corp., CAR USA in Elmira Heights, NY, the state of Vermont Grounds Division, Pike Industries, and other places. He was a salesman for Northern Basement Systems, and, very recently, he was a car salesman for Capitol City KIA in Montpelier, VT. Jesse was free-spirited and dearly loved by his family and friends. Time spent with his daughter, Liorah, was precious to him. He had a great sense of humor and loved to joke around. Parties, bonfires, music, concerts with lots of singing and dancing gave him great pleasure. He enjoyed swimming, playing horseshoes, working out at the gym, watching movies, cars, sunsets and all kinds of nature. Jesse enjoyed reading and writing, and recently expressed his desire to do more writing. Jesse was a member of the George Washington Lodge 51 F. & A.M. of Chelsea. In 2010, Jesse received the Mason of the Year Award. He was an active and loved member of various 12-step groups.
Aaron Johnson, CPE '99, died January 15, 2014, following a short illness. He was born on October 28, 1975, in Plattsburgh, NY, the son of Mayon C. and Rebecca (Dike) Johnson Jr. He graduated from Mount Abraham Union High School and Vermont Technical College. He was employed at IBM.
Michael Garofano, LAH ’08, of Rutland, VT, died with his father Aug. 28, 2011, in Rutland, VT, as a tragic result of Hurricane Irene. He was born in Rutland, VT Oct. 5, 1986, the son of Michael J. and Celestine (Sitek) Garofano. He was a 2005 graduate of Rutland High School, attended Community College of Vermont for one year and graduated in 2008 from Vermont Technical College with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Landscape Development & Ornamental Horticulture. Mr. Garofano was employed at Proctor-Pittsford Country Club since 2002 and self-employed at M.G. Lawn & Landscape. He enjoyed playing golf, maple sugaring and country music. Survivors include his mother, a brother, Thomas Garofano, paternal grandparents, Patrick and Jacqueline Garofano, and maternal grandmother, Valeria Sitek, all of Rutland, aunts, uncles and cousins. The funeral service for Michael and his father was held Sept. 9, 2011, at St. Peter Church.