Obituaries August 13, 2014
Mahlon “George” Allen Jr.
Mahlon “George” Allen Jr. of Craftsbury died on August 7, 2014, after a long, courageous battle with cancer.
He was born on December 8, 1960, in New Britain, Connecticut.
Mr. Allen was an avid hunter, golfer and horseshoe player. He enjoyed traveling to Florida, taking cruises, and spending time with close friends and family.
His love for his children and grandchildren was evident in their return of love and support during his life. He was known as a friendly and caring man, always willing to help anyone that asked or those that didn’t.
His life’s work of forestry management was one of his passions. Whether it was cutting firewood or working closely with a forester to help preserve the beautiful Vermont forests, it was hard and labor intensive but he was dedicated on even his worst days.
His custom baseball bats gave many professional athletes the opportunity to experience his craftsmanship.
He was a member of the AMVETS, NRA, and Copley Golf Association, where he mentored many young golfers during his time spent there, sharing his passion and expertise.
He is survived by his mother, Dorothy Keoppen of Leesburg, Florida; his sisters: Deby Lutterschmidt and her husband, Gabe, of Oakwood, Illinois, and Corrina Allen of Tampa, Florida; his sons: Jason Allen of Barre and Shaun Allen and his wife, Misty, of Craftsbury; six grandchildren: Matthew, Nicholas, Natalie, Lillian, McKenzie, and Devin Allen; several nieces and nephews; one great-nephew, Damien Burns; and by a special niece, Amber Martin.
He was predeceased by his wife, Claudette, in 2008; his father, Mahlon, in 1992; and Papa Neil in 2008.
Funeral services were held on August 9, 2014 in Craftsbury. Burial followed at the East Craftsbury Cemetery in East Craftsbury.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the family to help with funeral expenses and to provide a college fund for his grandchildren. Contributions may be sent to Shaun Allen, 451 Hines Road, Craftsbury, Vermont. 05826.
Online condolences at curtis-britch.com.
Leo J. Desautels, 94, of Holland died peacefully on August 9, 2014, in Lebanon, New Hampshire.
He was born on November 26, 1919, in St. Theodore d’Acton Vale, Quebec, to Omer and Yvonne (Dion) Desautels.
In 1950, he married the former Claire St. Amand, who predeceased him on July 8, 2006.
He was a carpenter during his lifetime and was employed by Union Local 397.
His hobbies included playing cards, and he enjoyed his garden and was very proud of it. He loved family gatherings. He built the first drive thru McDonald’s in Connecticut, and he was a big fan of professional wrestling.
He is survived by his children: Robert Desautels and his wife, Ginny, of Plainville, Connecticut, Richard Desautels and his wife, Carrie, of Morgan, Rita Landry and her husband, Jeannot, of Holland, and Ronald Desautels and his wife, Robin, of Lebanon, Maine; nine grandchildren; ten great-grandchildren; his siblings: Gilles Desautels of Richford, Jean-Noel Desautels of Richford, Laurent Desautels of Texas, Albert Desautels of Enosburg Falls, and Germaine and Jacqueline, both of Canada; his half-sister Marthe of Massachusetts; and by several nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by the following brothers and sisters: Florian, Marcel, Germain, and Andre, Yvette, Laurette, Laurencia and Lucienne.
Friends may call from 5 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, August 13, at the Curtis-Britch-Converse-Rushford Funeral Home, at 4670 Darling Hill Road in Newport. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, August 14, at the Church of God in Derby, with the Reverend Laurence Wall officiating.
Should friends desire, contributions in his memory may be made to the Church of God, 295 Crawford Road, Derby, Vermont 05829.
Online condolences at curtis-britch.com.
Lionel A. Fontaine, 74, of Barton died on August 9, 2014, at his home, surrounded by his loving family.
He was born on April 4, 1940, in Weedon, Quebec, to Albini and Jeanne (Gauthier) Fontaine.
On October 20, 1962, he married Laurette LaMadeleine, who survives him.
He was employed for Rodd’s Roofing in St. Johnsbury for 42 years.
He loved watching NASCAR and his favorite driver, Jeff Gordon. He liked to putter around the house and was always available to give a helping hand to family and friends.
He was a quiet person who had a charming smile that affected all who he came into contact with.
He is survived by his wife, Laurette Fontaine of Barton; his children: Lisa Hansen and her friend, Dave, Monica Menard and her husband, Tony, and Kim Blanchard and her husband, Rick; his daughters-in-law: Reene Fontaine and Tammi Hodgdon; his grandchildren: Billy Hansen and his friend, Becky, Samantha Fortin and her husband, Mark, Fawn Coderre and her husband, Roland, Michael Fontaine, Anthony Menard, Mark Fontaine, Alex Menard, Brianna Fontaine, Tyler Blanchard, Abigail Blanchard, and Isabelle Blanchard; his great-grandchildren: Alex, April, and Jason Coderre and Parker Fortin; his siblings: Gerard Fontaine and his wife, Helen, Ronnie Fontaine, Real Fontaine and his wife, Rose, Marcel Fontaine and his friend, Sharon, Noella Roy and her husband, Raymond, Peggy Collins and her husband, Lee, Aline LaMadeleine, and Diane Mudgett and her husband, Mark; and also by several nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by two sons, Michael Fontaine and Mark Fontaine; two brothers: Leonard and Alan Fontaine; and by his sister Nicole.
At his request, there will be no services.
Family and friends are welcome to visit his family at his home to share their memories and condolences.
Online condolences at curtis-britch.com.
Virginia “Gene” Bell Gray, 93, a 61-year resident of Greensboro, died on Monday July 7, 2014, in Tarpon Spring, Florida.
She was born on January 16, 1921, in Glover, daughter of the late Benjamin and Lillian (Chadburn) Thompson. She attended Parrish school in Glover.
On June 20, 1939, she married Roland David Gray in Glover.
Mrs. Gray stayed at home to care for her young children. In 1953, she and her husband purchased a dairy farm in Greensboro which they operated for more than 16 years. In 1969, when the farm was sold, they moved to Greensboro village. She worked at Hardwick Knitwear and became involved in the cottage industry knitting for Moriarty Hats.
She was one of several ladies to testify before a Congressional committee in 1985 in defense of the right to participate in a cottage industry without paying union dues to the International Ladies Garment Workers. The union felt that these women who were using knitting machines in their own homes to produce products for a distributor should be required to pay union dues. Congress subsequently passed a law protecting the right of those in cottage industries to do so without union interference
She was a member of the Hope Community Church in South Walden. She enjoyed sewing, dancing, flower gardening and spending the winter months in Florida.
One of her passions in life was children. In addition to her own family, she cared for many other children in town and was affectionately known as “Grammy Gene.”
She is survived by three children: Sherwood Gray and his wife, Barbara, of Boyd, Texas, Shirley Lyles and her husband, James, of Bethesda, Maryland, and Stewart Gray and his wife, Dianna, of Barre; seven grandchildren: David and Michael Lyles, Laurie Bean, Tammy Jernigan, Scott Gray, Scott Greene and Kim Greene; several great-grandchildren; her sisters: June St. Louis of Greensboro Bend, and Katherine Dean of St. Albans; her brother-in-law Roger Gray of Willimantic, Connecticut; and many nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family members and her companion of many years, Kenneth Brown Sr.
She was predeceased by her husband of 61 years, Roland, in 2000; two sons: Sherman and Stanley Gray; a daughter, Priscilla Greene; a grandson, Keith Gray; and by six siblings including her brothers: Carroll, George, and Merrill Thompson, and her sisters: Lila Tyler, Ila Gray and Muriel Thompson.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, August 23, at the Hope Community Church in South Walden with the Reverend Ernest Machia officiating. Burial will be in the Westlook Cemetery in Glover.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory may be made to the Greensboro Fire Department, P.O. Box 83, Greensboro, Vermont 05841; or to the Hardwick Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 837, Hardwick, Vermont 05843; or to the Hope Community Church in South Walden, care of the Reverend Ernest Machia, 855 Main Street, Greensboro Bend, Vermont 05842.
J. Paul Kane, prominent Hartford, Connecticut, attorney and gritty Vermont gentleman farmer, died on July 24, 2014, at his home in East Burke. He was 78.
He was born in Holyoke, Massachusetts. Throughout most of his adult life, he traveled back and forth on Interstate 91 between his career practicing law in Hartford, and his home and family in Vermont. A man of simple pleasures and humorous rituals, he often claimed he had a favorite rest stop midway between work and home where he would change out of his suit and back into his cut-off jeans. As an attorney, he was known for his competence and integrity; and as a regular skier on Burke Mountain, he was known for his silver beard, chairlift cigars, and classic alpine style.
He graduated from St. Michael’s College, served in the U.S. Air Force from 1957 to 1959, and then received his law degree from Boston University Law School. In 1969, he became a founding partner in the law firm Michelson and Kane, now known as Michelson, Kane, Royster and Barger in Hartford.
Mr. Kane met Linda (Bucciarelli), an ER nurse at Mount Sinai Hospital in Hartford. They married in 1968 and started a family in Broad Brook, Connecticut. Their enthusiasm for gardening and the outdoors quickly outgrew their Connecticut yard. While maintaining his career in Hartford, in 1977 they moved the family to East Burke, and built the house on Darling Hill Road where he lived for the rest of his life.
During their 40-plus years in the Northeast Kingdom, they raised their three children as well as many generations of sheep, pigs, turkeys, chickens, barn cats, horses, and llamas, and two dogs.
A charismatic storyteller and lifelong learner, Mr. Kane loved to tell and re-tell tales, and relay mostly accurate facts on any topic from the U.S. Constitution to the proper technique for stacking a cord of wood. He was in his best spirits skiing the east side of Burke Mountain, paddling a canoe on a river, or sipping a beer on the back deck with his wife, family, and lifelong friends.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Linda, and their three children and their families: Bridget Kane, Michael Kane his wife, Kristine, and Cathleen Kane and her husband, Stefan, and his granddaughter Zora Kane-Tornquist, who adored her “Pa.” He also leaves cousins, several sisters-in-law, many nieces and nephews, and a tight community of friends and extended family.
He was predeceased by his brother Howard Kane, and their parents, Howard and Norma (O’Melia) Kane.
In his memorial directions, his Yankee thrift and impish sense of humor were evident with his instructions, “If you elect to lay me out, don’t put me in a suit. Comfortable clothes please, but don’t waste a good sweater.”
A memorial service will be held at 11:30 a.m., on Saturday, August 23, at the Union Meeting House in Burke Hollow, with a “large and boisterous party” to follow, as per his last requests.
Robert “Bob” Paul Manges, 43, of Riverton, Wyoming, died suddenly on July 28, 2014, at the Wyoming Medical Center in Casper, Wyoming, having sustained a traumatic brain injury from a fall while traveling with his beloved Arapaho sister, Alberta Little.
He was buried at the Arapaho Catholic Cemetery on the Wind River Reservation following a traditional Native American mass and wake.
Robert (Little Crow) began his journey on February 7, 1971, with his Arapaho family. At one and a half years old, he was adopted by Indian Health Service physician Dr. John Manges and his wife, Carol. He and his new brother, Chris, moved to Vermont, where he loved tractors, trucks, the outdoors, and drawing. He grew up to be a determined cross-country runner at Lyndon Institute, an enthusiastic swimmer, and a fearless downhill skier. He enjoyed trout fishing and won awards for his forestry skills.
But more than anything, he was known for being big-hearted and loyal to his friends and family. His sense of humor was contagious! Those who loved him in Vermont always wished him well as he reconnected with his Arapaho roots and became a dedicated truck driver.
After serving in the U.S. Navy, he worked on the Arapaho Ranch in Wyoming and as a Sho-Rap wildland firefighter. He received his CDL and heavy equipment training at Utah State University. As a driver with hazmat endorsements, he went on to a career with various long haul trucking companies including Dick Simon and, most recently, Wind River Transport.
He leaves behind his loving family and friends: his only son, John Luke Manges of St. Louis, Missouri; his mother Carol Krochak and his stepdad Mark Kilburn of Burke Hollow; his brother Chris Manges and his sister-in-law Desiree Hertz, and his nieces Kate and Erin O’Farrell of Burke Hollow; his sister Tayva and his brother-in-law Steve Young, and his nephew Nolan and his niece Norah Young of Derry, New Hampshire; his sister Breanna Kilburn and her fiancé, Joshua Barnes, and his niece Sycada of Danville; his uncle and aunt, Tom and Jackie Manges of West Burke; his cousins: Lindsey and Christian Gauderer of Burlington, and Jordan Manges of St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands; his aunt and uncle, Molly and Bill Boyle, and family, of Bristol, Tennessee; his aunt Marianne Koehler of Flanders, New Jersey; his cousin Karen Quinn and family of Galloway, New Jersey; his cousin Scott Schaefer and family of Succasunna, New Jersey; his stepmom Jeanne Desrochers and her husband John Miller of Coventry; his best buddy Joshua Doyle of Jericho; and many friends in the Northeast Kingdom and in Maine. He also leaves behind a large and loving Arapaho family on the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming.
He was predeceased by his father Dr. John P. Manges Jr., formerly of Danville; his Arapaho birth parents, five siblings, and grandparents in Wyoming; and his adoptive grandparents in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Friends are invited to a celebration of his life on Sunday, August 31, at the Riverside School, at 30 Lily Pond Road in Lyndonville. A potluck feast will begin at noon.
Memorial contributions in his name may be made to a fund for Arapaho schoolchildren, to be announced on August 31; or locally, to the Burklyn Arts Council, P.O. Box 1056, Lyndonville, Vermont 05871.
Carol G. McMullen, 75, of Morgan died on August 1, 2014, in Burlington, surrounded by her family, after a lengthy struggle with cancer.
She was a daughter of Samuel and Grace (Taylor) Curtis of Morgan. She was born in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, and moved to Vermont with her family when she was young, graduating from Newport High School in 1957.
She worked as a receptionist for 28 years at Northeast Kingdom Mental Health, retiring from there in 2002, and started working as a medical transcriptionist at North Country Hospital until her surgery in January of 2013.
She loved being with her children and grandchildren and made sure they knew they could rely on her for anything.
She enjoyed going to visit relatives in Cape Cod, going to baseball games, watching the Red Sox, fishing, shopping, gambling, knitting, baking, and feeding wildlife.
She is survived by four children: James Millett of Brownington, Cam Green and her partner, Ramiro, of Derby, Robin Scott and her husband, Ed, of Richmond, and Bud McMullen and his wife, Jocelyn, of Morgan; her precious grandchildren: Dylan Doane, Courtney Millett, JJ Millett, Sasha Green, Sawyer Green, Saigelyn Green, Christopher Martel, Ian Martel, Isabel Scott, Brooke McMullen and Autumn McMullen; one great-grandchild, Kaylee Farnsworth; her siblings: Bud Curtis and his wife, Helen, of Texas, Philip Curtis and his wife, Susan, of Massachusetts, Nancy Green, Craig Curtis, and David Curtis, and their spouses, all of Vermont; and by several cousins, nieces, nephews and special friends: Shirley Lutz, a cousin, of Cape Cod in Massachusetts, Iola Barnard of Morgan, and Lisa Burke of Coventry.
She was predeceased by her parents, Samuel and Grace Curtis; and by a brother, Paul Curtis.
There will be no calling hours. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, August 16, at 1 p.m., at Curtis-Britch-Converse-Rushford Funeral Home, at 4670 Darling Hill Road in Newport.
In lieu of flowers, friends are welcome to donate to the Carol McMullen Memorial Fund, at Community National Bank, which contributes to her grandchildren’s college expenses.
Online condolences at curtis-britch.com.
In last week’s obituary for Claire Lyon of Brownington the family inadvertently left off the name of Mrs. Lyon’s surviving sister, Clemence LeBlond.