Obituaries 9.16.20

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Earl Benjamin Whitmore, Jr.

Earl Benjamin Whitmore Jr., 53, of St. Johnsbury died at the Jack Byrne Center for Palliative and Hospice Care early in the morning on Saturday, September 5, 2020, with his wife, Jennifer, by his side.

Earl was born in Oakland, California, on September 11, 1966.  He grew up primarily in San Mateo County, California, with his parents, Earl B. Whitmore Sr. and Mary O’Connor.

Earl moved to Massachusetts with his mother and finished high school at North Hampton High School.  He attended St. Michael’s College where he earned his bachelor of arts degree in fine arts in 1991.

He was married to Jennifer Alexander in 1995.  They recently celebrated their twenty-fifth anniversary together.

Earl was a well-known member of the snow sports community, being part of the Professional Ski Instructors of America — Eastern Division (PSIA-E) for professional ski instructors of America for 30 years, as well as a member of the PSIA-E advanced children’s educator team.  He loved art, shooting, cycling, baseball umpiring, and was an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox.

Earl is survived by his wife, Jennifer Alexander-Whitmore; his son Benjamin Whitmore of St. Johnsbury; his stepmother, Beverly Whitmore; his in-laws:  John and Anne Alexander, John and Cheryl Alexander, Steve Alexander and Devon MacLeod, Sarah Janes Alexander, and Eben Alexander; as well as several nieces and nephews.

Condolences may be sent to 37 Spring Street, St. Johnsbury, Vermont 05819.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the PSIA-E “Terry Fund” in Earl’s memory.  Checks may be sent to the Professional Ski Instructors of America and the American Association of Snowboard Instructors (PSIA-AASI):  Eastern Division, 5 Columbia Circle, Albany, New York 12203.

While no formal service will occur at this time, a celebration of life will be held at a later date due to COVID-19.

Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at


Charlotte Elaine Powers Webster

It is with great sadness daughter Lynn announces the death of her beloved mother and best friend, Charlotte Elaine Powers Webster, who died on Thursday, August 13, 2020.

Charlotte was born in Derby on May 31, 1941.  She was the daughter of the late Kenneth and Esther Powers.  She attended and graduated from Derby Academy in 1953.

She then met and married her husband, Richard Ernest Webster, on September 26, 1959.  They then had a family and built their own home in Newport Center.

Charlotte worked for years at Community National Bank before buying their gourmet coffee business and rental house.  They sold everything and moved to Las Vegas to be near their daughter Lynn, her husband, Charles, and grandchildren Jordan and Whitney.  Their love of travel saw them on the road, off and on, for 54 years.  They traveled the entire continental United States, all the providences of Canada, and Mexico.  They loved to load up their RV and take Jordan and Whitney on trips with them as well.

Charlotte was predeceased by her parents; her husband, Richard, of 54 years; her brother Dale; her dearly loved brother Richard; and her best friend of over 65 years, Lorraine Barnes.

She is survived by her daughter Lynn and her husband, Charles; her grandson Jordan and his wife, Katie, and their daughter, who was named after her, Skylar Charlotte (in the picture with her); and her granddaughter Whitney.  She is also survived by her two sons and their families; her three brothers:  Norman, Larry, and Robert; her sister Jane; and her very special sister-in-law and best friend of over 60 years, Elenor Powers.

The last seven years her daughter Lynn has cared for her mom in their home.  They’ve spent hours talking, with Lynn memorizing all the stories she had to tell.  An era has ended for her, and it is now time for her to pick up the torch and carry on her family’s history.  Charlotte is deeply missed by Lynn, her family, and all who knew her.  She was the most honest and straightforward person Lynn had ever known.

There will be no funeral services, as the family will have a private ceremony honoring her memory.  Her ashes will be spread along with her husband’s, who has been waiting for her for seven years, where it all began 61 years ago.


Raymond H. Sykes

Raymond H. Sykes, 93, of Newport died on Thursday, September 10, 2020, in Newport.

He was born on September 29, 1926, in Holland to the late Roger and Eula (Flynn) Sykes.

On April 4, 1949, he married Ardis Wilcox, who predeceased him in 2014.

Raymond and Ardis owned and operated a dairy farm in Morgan for many years.  He enjoyed the family farm, going to auctions, and watching horse pulling at the county fairs.

He is survived by four sons:  Richard Sykes and his wife, Helene, of Newport, Kenneth Sykes and his wife, Denise, of Morgan, Randy Sykes and his wife, Sharon, of Derby Line, and Gary Sykes and his wife, Christine, of Norton; his 11 grandchildren; his 18 great-grandchildren; his siblings:  Russell Sykes and his companion, Jocelyn Davio, of Derby, Brian Sykes and his wife, Carolyn, of Derby, and Hazel Pelillo and her husband, Rocco, of New Hampshire.

He was predeceased by two infant sons; his brothers:  Earl, Harley, Delwin, and Allen; and his sisters:  Beulah Ellam, Mabel Judd, Lois Carpenter, Eva Raitt, and Janice Santacruce.

A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, September 19, 2020, at the Newport Center Cemetery with the Reverend James Merriam officiating.

Should friends desire, contributions in his memory may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 300 Corner Stone Drive, Suite 128, Williston, Vermont 05495.  Please follow CDC guidelines, and please wear a mask.

Online condolences may be made at


Barbara Janet Stack

Barbara Janet Stack, 83, of Barre died on Thursday, September 3, 2020, at Central Vermont Medical Center.

Barbara was one who had a strong personality and had no shame in voicing her opinion.  That being said, she was loved by all who knew her.

Barbara worked as a hairdresser in Bellows Falls, as well as West Lebanon, New Hampshire, for fifteen years.  Following her hair dressing years, Barbara worked as a bank teller for Chittenden Bank in Montpelier for seventeen years.  The line of people waiting for Barbara was always full, as each person looked forward to a joke that they would hear from her, which came from her strong love of humor.

When not working, Barbara could be found making crafts.  She had a strong passion for woodworking, specifically making wooden rocking horses for people as well as homemade baskets. During the wintertime, those who knew her did not have any fear of being cold during the harsh weather, as Barbara would knit hats and mittens and give them to those in need.

Every day, Barbara would find her way down to Aldrich Public Library in Barre.  Her passion for reading was like that of no other, and she would be in a book every day.

Barbara is survived by her two sons Edward Stack Jr. and Gary Stack; her granddaughters Coral Stack and Katelyn Foster; her great-grandchildren Talia Kentel and Gabriel Kentel; her nieces Sandy Butkovich and Cindy Stack; and her nephews:  Steve Butkovich, Louis Butkovich, Patrick Stack, and Michael Stack.

There will be no calling hours or services for Barbara.  Online condolences may be made at

In lieu of flowers, the family would like donations to be made to Aldrich Public Library at 6 Washington Street, Barre, Vermont 05641, in memory of Barbara.


Miriam E. Nelson

Miriam E. Nelson, 99, of Norton died peacefully on Monday, September 7, 2020, at her home surrounded by her close friends after a brief illness.  (The end of the Nelson era)

Miriam was born on April 26, 1921, in Norton and was a daughter of the late Edward and Helen (Parker) Nelson.

Miriam attended St. Paul’s Convent (Presentation of Mary), which was just across the road from Miriam’s house.  The Nelson families were very good to the nuns.  After high school, Miriam assisted her brother Bill and sister Ruth in the operation of the family-owned IGA store, which is situated next to the house.  The post office was in the store, and Miriam also did those duties.

Her dad was town clerk for 38 years and he had appointed Miriam as his assistant in November of 1949.  Mr. Nelson died suddenly from a heart attack, a tragic day for the family and the community.  On that day, Miriam was sworn in by the select board to replace her father as town clerk.  The next year, in 1950, at the annual Town Meeting she was elected town clerk and treasurer and proudly carried those titles for the next 53 years.

Miriam’s 53-year career was recognized by the Vermont State Legislature, which passed a joint resolution honoring Miriam’s, “extraordinary service as town clerk and treasurer,” and noted her position as Vermont’s longest-serving town clerk and treasurer.

It wasn’t always easy for Miriam, not everyone is as kind and compassionate as she was.  During those tough times she would come home and announce to her sister Ruth, “That’s it, this is my last day as town clerk.”  To which Ruth would respond, “Now Miriam.”  Before the conversation was over, Miriam decided to go back to work.

Miriam was a quiet, peaceful woman and a true Christian.  She has been featured in National Geographic and Yankee Life magazines, but she really enjoyed the simple things in life, such as, going riding with her brother and sister, sometimes bringing a picnic lunch.  She had a birdhouse right next to her window, and enjoyed watching the birds and sometimes a deer looking at her, or even a raccoon trying to get some food.  At one time they had many cats and dogs.  She just enjoyed all of God’s creatures.

She was very grateful and appreciative to her caregivers and friends, who also loved her.  There was always a big thank-you, no matter how small the deed.  Miriam enjoyed get-togethers.

Her favorite memory came on October 26, 2019, when the town of Norton dedicated the former school and current town office building in her honor and named the building “The Miriam Nelson Memorial Building.”  All accolades that Miriam received were well deserved.

Miriam was predeceased by her brother Wilmot “Bill,” and her sister Ruth.

She was a member of the Morgan United Church, and she will be missed by all who had the privilege of knowing her.  Miriam, may you rest in peace.

Funeral services were held on September 10 at the Morgan United Church with the Pastor Michael DeSena officiating.  Interment followed at the Mt. Forest Cemetery in Coaticook, Quebec, Canada.

Should fiends desire, contributions in Miriam’s name may be made to the charity of one’s choice.

Online condolences may be made at


Renald Joseph Messier

Renald Joseph Messier, 91, of Newport died peacefully at North Country Hospital on Saturday, September 5, 2020.  His family was able to say goodbye to him, thankfully, in person and by phone.

Renald was born at his family farm in Newport Center on November 21, 1928, to Laura (Maheu) Messier and Leo Messier.  He attended graded school in Newport Center, and then went to Sacred Heart High School, graduating in 1947.

Renald met the love of his life, June Grover, at the Red Wing Dance Hall.  Their love of Big Band music and dancing continued throughout their lives.  They were married on June 28, 1952, and had two daughters.  Renald was an extremely loving and dedicated father and grandfather.

After getting married, Renald was still a devoted son, going to his parents’ farm every Sunday to help with chores, and haying in the summer.  Family was a priority.  He cherished family gatherings and visits from relatives.  When his brother Roger would visit from Texas every summer, they were quite the pair.

Renald’s love of farming continued with his job at Eastern States, which later became Agway.  He worked there 34-plus years, first delivering grain, then as an assistant manager.  He was well known and well liked by customers for his knowledge and good nature, and for his willingness to go the extra mile.  His coworkers will also remember his sense of humor.  He was a legend at Agway.

Renald also loved growing vegetables.  His impressive garden was admired by everyone who passed by. When his grandson was young, Renald enjoyed teaching him how to plant and harvest. Renald and June canned and froze many vegetables in the heat of August, when June really wanted to be at the beach.

Renald was a member of the Knights of Columbus, and volunteered for the Newport Fire Department in the 1960s and ’70s.  He was a devout Catholic.  His strong faith sustained him, especially after the death of his wife in 2009.  He was a jack-of-all-trades, and loved being at home puttering.  He was a hard worker who never complained; was very patient, humble, caring, respectful, and always willing to lend a hand.  He was part of the greatest generation.

Renald is survived by his daughters Jane Tomlinson and her husband, Robert, of Montverde, Florida, and Ann Marie Lanoue and her husband, James, of Barton; his grandchildren Andrew Lanoue and his fiancé, Meg Heaghney, and Laura Lanoue and her boyfriend, Louis Prion; his sisters:  Henriette Armstrong, Marguerite Burrell, and Claire Burlton; and his several nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was predeceased by his wife; his parents; his brother Urgel; his sister Andrea Smith and her husband, Bert; his brother Roger Messier and his wife, Bettie; and his brothers-in-law Robert Armstrong, Bernie Burrell, and John “Pete” Burlton.

Funeral services were held on September 11 at the St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church. Interment followed at St. Mary’s Star of the Sea Catholic Cemetery in Newport.

Should friends desire, contributions in Renald’s memory may be made to Mater Dei Parish, 191 Clermont Terrace, Newport, Vermont 05855.

Online condolences may be made at


Marjorie Judd

Marjorie Judd, 83, of Derby died on Thursday, September 10, 2020, at her home.

She was born on July 12, 1937, in Charleston to the late Bernie and Gertrude (Willis) Dane.

Marjorie enjoyed gardening, cooking, and spending time with her family.

She is survived by her daughter Christie Aldrich and her husband, Dean; her sons:  Bradley Judd and his wife, GiGi Gobeil-Judd, Peter Judd, and Patrick Judd and his wife, Elizabeth; her grandchildren:  Benjamin and Tanya Aldrich, Chad Aldrich, Elizabeth and Abe Miller, Brendan and Corinne Judd, Evan and Maria Judd, Houston Judd and his fiancé, Tori, Logan Judd and his partner, Paige, Kyle Judd, Jazmine Judd, Alexandria Judd, and Jackson Judd; her great-grandchildren:  Alexis, Arlo, Azalea, Mason, Fern, Reagan, Quinn, and Oliver; her brother Clair Dane and his wife, Charlotte; and her sisters:  Caroline White, Sandra Brown and her husband, Robert, and Geraldine Hallock and her husband, Greg.

She was predeceased by her husband, Kenneth Judd; both of her parents; and her brother Earl Dane.

Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. on Friday, September 18, at the Judd Farm at 2028 Herrick Road in Derby with the Reverend John Genco officiating.

If friends desire, donations in Marjorie’s name may be made to the American Cancer Society, 55 Day Lane, Williston, Vermont 05495.

Online condolences may be made at


Herman R. Cross Jr.

Herman R. Cross Jr., 95, of Island Pond died on Wednesday, September 9, 2020, in Barton.

Herman was born to Herman and Bertha (Bunnell) Cross on September 2, 1925, on a farm outside of Colebrook, New Hampshire, known as Kidderville.  Herman was the youngest of 11 children.

He was predeceased by seven brothers and three sisters.

He married the love of his life, Gwendolyn Ellingwood, of Colebrook.  Herman served in the United States Navy during World War II.

When he returned from the Navy, he and Gwen bought a 340-acre farm in Westmore just outside of Island Pond, and raised their six children.  They both worked extremely hard on their farm, growing gardens, milking cows, and working in the woods.  Herman enjoyed hunting and fishing and, after retirement, both he and Gwen enjoyed traveling.

Herman is survived by his children and their spouses:  Daniel Cross and his wife, Bonnie, Nancy Frizzell, Carol and Buster Reilly, Randall and Marguerite Cross, and Peggy and David Fedele; his daughter-in-law Shirley Cross; his 11 grandchildren:  Peter Applebee, Jacque Cross Sarter, Douglas Petell, Mark and Jessica Reilly, Nathan Cross, Melissa Fedele, Christie Fedele Brasseur, Patty Cross Avery, Lisa Cross, and Jamie Cross Fisher; his 17 great-grandchildren; his five great-great-grandchildren; his one step-grandson; his one step-great-granddaughter; and his four special nephews:  Dennis, Ron, and Gary Cross, and Duane (Bo) Rainville.

Herman was predeceased by his loving wife of 75 years, Gwen, and his youngest son James, both in May 2019, a day apart; and his special nephew Reg Ellingwood.

There will be no public services.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Legion Post #80 in Island Pond, P.O. Box 350, Island Pond, Vermont 05846, in memory of Herman and Gwen Cross.

Online condolences may be made at


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