Obituaries 3.25.20

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Robert Guy Wing

Robert Guy Wing died on Thursday, March 19, 2020.

He was born on May 1, 1941, in Newport.  He was the son of Guy H. Wing and Arline M. (Barnes) Wing. 

Robert spent his formative years in Island Pond, where he hunted, fished, skied, and reveled in the natural beauty that a childhood in the Northeast Kingdom provided.  He formed a powerful connection to his grandfather’s camp on McConnell Pond, one that never diminished over the span of his life. 

 Upon graduation from Brighton High School, Robert joined the U.S. Army.  After completing his first overseas tour, he met Marya Anne Curran, from Medford, Massachusetts, who was working as a nurse at a summer camp on Job’s Pond in Newark. 

Robert and Marya fell in love, married, and Robert re-enlisted in the military.  Together they embarked on a military career that saw assignments in Germany, New Jersey, Virginia, Colorado, and Maryland.  (Robert also completed tours in South Korea and Japan.) 

After retiring from the military in 1983, Robert, Marya, and family moved back to Island Pond, where Robert worked for the Brighton Road Department and served on the Brighton Ambulance Squad, where he put his excellent driving skills to good use, and served his community for many years.

Robert was happiest on the road.  His children fondly recall road trips and camping trips across the U.S. and Europe, fearless expeditions up narrow mountain roads in Colorado, and picnics by dazzling blue lakes in Berchtesgaden, Garmisch, and Salzburg.  He was happiest with the open road before him, with mountains beckoning him. 

Until his 60s he would “round-up” Marya, his now-adult children, and his grandchildren, and head west, in his RV, to explore the less-traveled roads that crisscross the country he loved.  He cherished these adventures, but above all he cherished Marya.

With her death in 2016, Robert fell rapidly into emotional and physical decline. Marya was his northstar, and Robert could no longer navigate the world without her.  He relied more and more on his memories of happier times and then, sadly, when those memories faded, Robert faded, too.

Robert’s children meet their father’s death with enormous sadness, but find comfort in knowing that he is with his beloved Marya.  His children also meet his death with tremendous gratitude, for their father, the inveterate traveler, the road man, instilled in them not only an appreciation for the great, big, beautiful world they inhabit, but a sense of overwhelming peace that comes from having fallen asleep to the gentle hum of wheels beneath them, secure in the knowledge that their loving father would deliver them home safely, and carry them gently to their beds.  Now, it’s Robert’s turn to return home, and his adoring children release him, gently, into the care of the Lord, from whom all blessings flow.

Robert is survived by his brother Cydney Johnson and his wife, Sue; his sister Hannah Guenet and her partner, Arthur Menzel; and his brother-in-law Joseph Leo Guenet.  Robert is also survived by his children:  Jessica Puckett, Lisa Bean, Jenny Wing, and Robert Wing Jr.  Robert was the proud grandfather of Jarren and Josh Puckett, Katherine and Grace Ayers, and Zachery and Althea Tapley.  He also delighted in his great-grandchildren:  Emily Demers, Oliver Puckett, and Vivian Lacy.  He was father-in-law to John Puckett, David Bean, and Jean-Yves Saint-Pierre; and the former father-in-law to Joseph Anthony Ayers and Peter Tapley. 

There is no funeral or celebration of life planned for Robert at this moment. 

Robert’s family wishes to thank Kori Porter, registered nurse, whose gentle ministrations ensured not only their father’s comfort, but his dignity, too.

Online condolences may be made at

Denise S. Markwell

Denise S. Markwell, 63, of Derby died on Friday, March 13, 2020, at Newport Hospital surrounded by her loved ones.

Denise was born in Newport on April 6, 1956.

She is survived by her husband, Keith Markwell; her two children Matthew Lahue and Jeanie Lahue; her grandson Ryan Lahue, along with four other grandchildren; her four sisters; her two brothers; and her cousins from Newport Center.

Denise loved playing her Candy Crush game, she even loved playing poker back in the day.  She enjoyed getting out and going shopping and visiting family, she especially enjoyed her visits with her grandson Ryan Lahue when he would make his trips up from Maine.  She just enjoyed life.

She was predeceased by her daughter Roberta Lahue; and her granddaughter Natasha Lahue.

A special thanks to Keith Bell, Shantel and Ryan Daigle, Nancy Coleason, Alan, and Shirley and Rose Favreau for their support over the past eight months for the family as they were taking care of her.

Funeral services will take place at a further date.

Geraldine “Gerry” M. Gagnon

Geraldine “Gerry” M. Gagnon, 83, died Tuesday, March 3, 2020, at her home in Berwick, Maine, surrounded by her loving family, following a period of failing health.

Gerry was born April 23, 1936, in Salem, Massachusetts, a daughter of the late John and Anna (Bajkiewicz) Swiniarski.

 She was formerly of Derby, and Danvers, Massachusetts.  Before retirement Gerry worked for many years as a telephone operator for Hunt Memorial Hospital in Danvers, Massachusetts, and Middleton House of Corrections, Middleton, Massachusetts. 

 Everyone knew they were welcome at Gerry’s table if they needed a meal or just to be part of a family.  Always willing to lend a sympathetic ear, she was a “surrogate mother” to many.  Her cake decoration skills were legendary and she took great joy in tending to her flower gardens.

 Members of her family include her devoted husband of 62 years, Ernest Gagnon, of Berwick, Maine; her children:  Steven Gagnon and his wife, Roseanne, of North Weymouth, Massachusetts, Sharon Ranalli and her husband, Richard, of Berwick, Maine, Darlene Howard and her husband, Bud, of Mansfield, Massachusetts, and Ann-Marie Kelley and her husband, Robert, of Derby; her grandchildren:  Allison, Cassandra, Ilana, Alexander, Robert, and Melissa; her great-grandchildren Grace and Anthony; and her sister Joan Collins of Erie, Pennsylvania.

 A Mass was celebrated on Friday, March 6, at St. Martin’s Church in Somersworth, New Hampshire.  She was then laid to rest in the Southern Maine Veterans Cemetery in Springvale, Maine.

John Francis Cota

John Francis Cota, 68, died on Tuesday, March 10, 2020, at his home in Jeffersonville. 

He was born in Barton on May 23, 1951, son of the late Russell F. and Doris C. (Buskey) Cota.

John grew up in the Northeast Kingdom and moved to Lamoille County with his wife, Audrey, in 1972.  He began his career at New England Telephone, where he worked for 25 years.  He held several positions, but his favorite was working in the mailroom.

John liked spending time outside.  He would take care of his gardens and mow the lawn on his John Deere tractor.  He liked sitting on the front porch shooting the breeze with family and friends.

He was a fan of the open road and loved cruising the back roads in his truck or four-wheeler.  He would sometimes be gone for hours, so one had to be prepared for that if joining him for a ride or waiting for him to bring back something from the trip.

John was a pizza connoisseur, choosing to eat it whenever possible.  His favorite season was hunting season and he loved spending time at his hunting camp with his family.

He is survived by his loving wife of 48 years, Audrey (Perron) Cota; his daughter Shelly Sacramone and her husband, Dan, of Franklin, Massachusetts; his son Ryan Cota and his wife, Sarah, of Belvidere; his brother Jeffrey Cota and his wife, Jean, of Barton; his sister Jeanne Cota and her husband, Wayne, of South Burlington; his mother-in-law Dorothy Perron of Glover; his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law:  Brian Perron and his wife, Julie, Claire Michaud and her husband, Denis, David Perron and his wife, Martha, Elaine Gallup and Stuart Gaboriault, and Linda Deth and her husband, Paul; his five grandchildren:  Sophia, Calvin, Ryley, Renny, and Seeley; and his many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was predeceased by his brother James Cota; and father-in-law Norman Perron.

Private services were held on Friday, March 13, per John’s wishes. 

A celebration of life will be held on Sunday, May 31, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at John and Audrey’s house. 

Memorial contributions in John’s memory may be made to Lamoille Area Cancer Network, 198 Farr Avenue, Morrisville, Vermont 05661, or Lamoille Home Health and Hospice, 54 Farr Avenue, Morrisville, Vermont 05661. 

Please visit to share memories and condolences.


Phyllis A. Burrington

Phyllis A. Burrington, 77, of Derby, died on Thursday, March 19, 2020, in Derby.

She was born on March 6, 1943, to Calles Amidon and Doris (Chamberlain) Amidon of Lyndon Center.  

On June 29, 1968, she married the love of her life, Carroll “Pete” Burrington, who survives her.

Phyllis was a member of the Derby Community Church.  She worked there as a secretary for over 38 years. The Derby Community Church was a big part of her life.  She was always helping others by making people food, taking them out to lunch, or even a car ride.

She enjoyed going camping with Pete especially in the summer at Will-O-Wood, she loved all her four-legged animals that were like kids to her, and she loved making pies for her husband and members of the church.

She was predeceased by her parents.

Funeral services will be held at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be made in Phyllis’ name to the Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter, 502 Strawberry Acres Road, Newport, Vermont 05855, or to the Derby Community Church, P.O. Box 294, Derby, Vermont 05829.

Online condolences may be made at

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