Obituaries August 20, 2014

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obit BennettJessie T. Bennett

Jessie T. Bennett, 88, of North Troy died on August 12, 2014, at her home.

She was born on June 29, 1926, in Bridgeport, Connecticut, to Nicholas and Rosa (LaPiccarella) Tassielli.

She was a retired registered nurse.

She is survived by her children: Beverly Maxfield of North Troy, and Byron Wickham Jr. of Port St. Lucie, Florida; her grandchildren: Jay Wickham, Opal Stewart, and Jayson Maxfield; and by three great-grandchildren.

Services will be held in Florida at the convenience of the family.

Online condolences at curtis-britch.

obit ColburnRichard Alden Colburn Jr.

Richard Alden Colburn Jr., 58, of East Charleston died suddenly on August 14, 2014, in Newport.

He was born on November 3, 1955, in Newport, to Richard Colburn Sr. and the late Alta (Allbee) Colburn.

On July 4, 1998, he married Diane Nielsen-Hogge, who survives him.

He retired from Ethan Allen Manufacturing after nearly 40 years of service. He was a member of the Plymouth Congregational Church and a life member of the Charleston Historical Society. He was also sexton of the Charleston Cemetery, working with his dad for over 30 years, and a strong supporter of his wife’s dancing school, North Country School of Dance.

Mr. Colburn served as a fence viewer for the town of Charleston and as a past member of the East Charleston Fire Department.

He and his wife vacationed in Maine many times. He enjoyed gardening and was especially proud of his potato garden. An excellent marksman, he looked forward to deer season every year. He also repaired and sold chainsaws. He was an avid snowmobiler in the winter and enjoyed bike riding in the summer.

Always full of humor, he brought smiles and laughter to everyone he knew. A strong supporter of his big family, he always gave a helping hand, as a Good Samaritan to all. He loved to cut firewood and spend time in the forest.

He enjoyed his dogs, Hunter and Lulu, along with his cats. He took pride in maintaining his antique Mercury Montego.

He is survived by his wife, Diane L. Colburn of East Charleston; his children: Jennifer Turgeon and her husband, Tom, David Colburn and his wife, Alma, Jamie Colburn and her companion, Jason Brochu, and Sarah Leah Colburn and her companion, Damon Jones; his step-daughter, Krista Grenier; his father, Richard Colburn Sr. of East Charleston; his sister, Grace Frizzell of East Charleston; his mother-in-law, Marie Nielsen; his grandchildren: Martina and Shania Turgeon, Caden Colburn and Leo Colburn; his sister-in-law, Carolyn Cesare, and his brother-in-law, Julius Cesare; and by the following nieces and nephews: Amy and Fred Sherlaw, Dan and Alicia Frizzell, Mike and Marina Cesare, Mark and Jenn Cesare, and Matt and Patsy Cesare.

He was predeceased by his brother-in-law, Kenneth Frizzell.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, August 20, at the Plymouth Congregational Church in East Charleston with the Reverend Stuart Brush officiating. Interment will follow in Hillside Cemetery in East Charleston.

Should friends desire, contributions may be made to the Charleston Historical Society, or to the Charleston Fire Department, or to the Plymouth Congregational Church, all in care of Diane Colburn, 542 Twin Bridges Road, West Charleston, Vermont 05872.

Online condolences at

obit CurtisWilliam “Bill” Bernard Curtis Jr.

William “Bill” Bernard Curtis Jr., 78, of Newport died on August 13, 2014, in Newport.

He was born on August 23, 1935, in Newport to William and Elizabeth (LaPlante) Curtis Sr.

On June 5, 1959, he married Marilyn Willey, who survives him.

He graduated from Newport High School in 1953 and entered the United States Army in 1955. He was honorably discharged in 1957.

He was a self-employed mason contractor for over 45 years. He took great pride in his work and did projects all over Vermont, New Hampshire, and Iowa.

In 1974 he moved the entire family to Hartley and Spencer, Iowa, where they resided for two years. Upon his return to Vermont, he purchased the land that is now the Newport Car Wash and Poulos Insurance. He developed the car wash property mostly by himself and also had an ice cream stand at the current Poulos Insurance location for many years. He also established Northern Canoe, in which he took great pride in building canoes and kayaks.

Early in life he was a lineman and an auto body repairman. His last job was at the Jay Peak Resort, where he was a maintenance person.

His hobbies included hunting, snowmobiling, and ice fishing.

He is survived by his wife, Marilyn Curtis of Newport; his children: Clark Curtis and his wife, Linda, of Newport, and Bernard Curtis of Newport; his grandchildren: Adam Curtis and his wife, Suzanne, of South Burlington, and Spencer Curtis and Faith Curtis, both of Newport. He was about to be a great-grandfather in a few weeks. He is also survived by his sister, Dorothy Monfette, and her husband, Paul, of Newport; and by several nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was predeceased by his sisters: Vivian, Shirley, Alice, and Gladys “Red.”

Funeral services were held on August 18, in Newport.

Should friends desire, contributions in his memory may be made to the charity of one’s choice.

Online condolences at

obit laroseRobert “Rocky” Gene LaRose

Robert “Rocky” Gene LaRose, 65, of Brownington died peacefully in the predawn hours of August 15, 2014.

Truly, there will never be another LaRock LaRose.

He was born on May 2, 1949, in Burlington to Gabriel Andrew LaRose and Flora Louise Shepard, who predeceased him.

Around eight years of age, he was removed from his home because he wasn’t safe, which began his 37-year odyssey of living in institutions and group homes. He attended school through the fourth grade, and was always proud to say he “never went in Brandon Training School.”

Just before his thirty-fifth birthday, while living in Colbyville, he was sent to the Vermont State Hospital in Waterbury. Requesting an advocate, he met Bethany Knight, then the long-term care ombudsman for the Central Vermont Council on Aging in Barre. Thus began a lifelong friendship with Ms. Knight, her then four-year-old son, Elliot Kaiman, and their friends and family. In her family, Mr. LaRose found and returned great love.

When Ms. Knight and Thurmond Knight moved from Montpelier to Glover in 1994, Mr. LaRose hitchhiked to the Kingdom and declared he wanted his own apartment. After living in community care homes across central Vermont, he was ready to try independent living. Thanks to the courage and kindness of landlords Dr. Judy and Stan Dunklee, he moved into his first home on Elm Street in Barton. He lived a 20-year adventure in the Northeast Kingdom, well supported by the loyal staff at Northeast Kingdom Human Services, in particular, Deb Cogan and crew.

A few years later, Mr. LaRose was handed a box of markers and a pad of paper, and a natural folk artist was born. His earliest drawings were houses, perhaps to mark the significance of his finally having his own home. For several years, he sold his cards and posters at the Orleans County fairgrounds, using the profits to buy cowboy boots and Indian jewelry.

Sometime between the release of Rocky III and Rocky IV, Mr. LaRose announced he “was Rocky, and these hands are licensed.” A man with a rich imagination, he often created wonderful memories of a life he hadn’t lived; a practice that helped him transcend childhood pain and the absence of experiences. He was forever announcing he had adopted someone, warmly calling them “son, son-in-law, daughter, aunt” and so on. To be named friend or family by him was simply good karma.

When Elliot Kaiman joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1997, Mr. LaRose also became a military man. With every advancement in rank that Mr. Kaiman earned, Mr. LaRose leapt ahead of him, until one day he announced to the staff at Pierce Pharmacy in Barton that he was now General LaRose. And as a general, he focused on protecting others and the community at large. He was often seen wearing a badge, and would sometimes refer to himself as a sheriff or a Social Security guard.

With the support of his mental health workers, Mr. LaRose took his first plane trip, spending a week in Orlando, Florida, and touring Disney World. He took other trips out of Vermont as well, participating in the Peer Counseling network.

He married twice and enjoyed his years as a husband. He especially liked the wedding ceremony, cake, and gift table. For several summers, he and his second wife held re-marriages at the Knights’ home, with Roger Greeley officiating. Many folks have wonderful memories of those lovely summer parties, with Mr. LaRose encouraging the guests to sing and make some remarks.

Other highlights in his life include calling upon his Cherokee heritage to track down a lost dog, vacationing in Maine and seeing the Atlantic Ocean for the first time, winning numerous bowling trophies, having a fishing license in his wallet and occasionally catching a fish, staying overnight at the Knights’ in his self-titled Marine Coop, buying a washing machine, attending he law school graduation of his brother, Mr. Kaiman, in Massachusetts, and drawing elaborate scenes on all of the downstairs doors in the Knights’ home.

He was also a member of many churches, most recently the River of Life in Brownington and Life in Christ in Newport, where he always appreciated the fellowship, coffee, and doughnuts.

The last three years of his life, Mr. LaRose had the enormous good fortune of living with Marcia and the late Arthur Pepin of Brownington. Spending time with the Pepins’ beautiful draft horses gave him great purpose and pleasure. Ms. Pepin’s fine cooking and kind heart made his final days what he had always yearned for: living in a wonderful home with people who loved him.

He is survived by his adopted mother and father, Bethany and Thurmond Knight of Glover; his grandparents, Roger and Kay Greeley of Marquette, Michigan; his brother Elliot Kaiman and his wife, Alison Brodhagen, of Madison, Connecticut; his sister, Chelsea Knight of Brooklyn, New York; his nephews: Malcolm and Otto Kaiman; and by all the other fortunate folks he met throughout his life.

As per his wishes, his burial was at a small graveyard on the Knights’ property in Glover where his best friend, William Henry Legier, was buried in 2005.

A public celebration of his life will be held at 11:30 a.m. on September 25, in the state conference room of the Emory Hebard State Office Building in Newport, prior to the weekly gathering of Global Campus. Mr. LaRose enjoyed being part of Global Campus, and could be counted on each year to give a talk on “How to Be a Great Bowler.”

To honor his memory, friends may make a contribution online at or by mail to Global Campus Foundation, 43 South Main Street, Suite 3, Randolph, Vermont 05060.

Louisa Morse Dustan Levine

Louisa Morse Dustan Levine, 99, of Craftsbury Common died peacefully on August 9, 2014, in Morrisville.

She was born on October 21, 1914, in Craftsbury, to William and Helen (Paterson) Dustan.

In 1940 she married Emanuel Levine, who predeceased her.

Mrs. Levine graduated from Craftsbury Academy in 1932 and in 1934 from the dental hygienist program at the University of Syracuse. She was a dental assistant at the Veterans Administration in Orange, New Jersey, where she retired in 1979.

She was a volunteer at the Craftsbury Public Library up until the time of her death. She was a voracious reader of American history, a splendid cook, and she enjoyed gardening, flowers, and life.

She is survived by her children: Charles Levine of Oceanside, California, and Laura Noble of Bay Village, Ohio; her grandchildren: Aron Tavakoli, David Levine, Sam Noble, and Hannah Noble; and by her great-grandson Henry Tavakoli.

Funeral services were held on August 11, on Craftsbury Common. Interment will take place at a later date at the Craftsbury Common Cemetery.

Should friends desire, contributions in her memory may be made to the Craftsbury Public Library, Attention: Susan O’Connell, P.O. Box 74, Craftsbury Common, Vermont 05827.

Online condolences at

obit MonfetteFrancis Oliver Monfette

Francis Oliver Monfette, 89, of Orleans died peacefully, with his family at his side, on Wednesday, August 13, 2014, in Newport.

He was born on June 27, 1925, in Newport to Levi and Eva (Elie) Monfette.

On February 10, 1950, he married the love of his life, Florence (Picard) Monfette.

He was a man of all talents. As a young man, he worked many jobs, including working on the railroad, painting, and 25 years at Ethan Allen, from which he retired. He then went back following his retirement as a night watchman for many years.

He was a true family man and a very dedicated husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He was the patriarch of the family.

He is survived by his wife, Florence Monfette of Orleans; his children: Brian Monfette and his wife, Rhonda, of Orleans, Debbie Monfette of Irasburg and her partner, Craig Hankins of Barton, and Steve Monfette of Orleans; his grandchildren: Sonya Sackett and her fiancé, Jason Hale, of Albany, Tosha Wilcox of Irasburg, Angela Carlin and her husband, Raymond, of Irasburg, Tonya Hackett and her husband, Richie, of Newport, and Renee Monfette of Orleans and her friend, Todd Larose, of Eden; his great-grandchildren: Shania Hayes and Zachary Hale of Albany, Breanne Silvestro of Barton, Hunter Carlin of Irasburg, and Donnie Kontoes Jr. of Irasburg; his sister Betty Keement and her husband, Anthony, of Virginia; and by several nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his daughter, Lori Ann Monfette; five sisters: Shirley Amyot, Evelyn Day, Gladys Kelley, Winifred Stevens, and Alfreda Bowen; and by his brother, Raymond Shackett.

A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, August 21, at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Newport.

Should friends desire, contributions in his memory may be made to the Ronald Holland Dialysis Center, in care of North Country Hospital, 189 Prouty Drive, Newport, Vermont 05855.

Online condolences at

obit-paradisClaire Paradis Proteau

Claire Paradis Proteau, 90, of Magog, Quebec, formerly of Newport, died on July 21, 2014.

She was born on January 28, 1924, in Lambton, Quebec.

On September 1, 1945, she married Roger Proteau, who survives her. She is also survived by her children: Pierrette and her husband, Rob, Marc, Claudette and her husband, Bob, Andie and her husband, Reg, Muguette and her husband, Denis, Carolle, and John and his wife, Kathy; her 16 grandchildren; and her 19 great-grandchildren.

She was predeceased by two daughters: Micheline and Jocelyne; and by one sister and six brothers.

For the first 15 years of their married life, Mrs. and Mr. Proteau lived in Canada with their growing family. On June 30, 1960, they pulled up roots with their seven children and moved to Newport, on a dairy farm. They had one more child a few years later.

Throughout her long life, Mrs. Proteau did many things; her talents were limitless. She loved to cook and bake, many times creating delicious meals from just a few simple ingredients. Her love of cooking was one of the many gifts that she passed down to her children. Mom could fix anything! She was very handy with tools and loved to make something new out of something broken. Her hands were never idle. She loved gardening and canning, proud that she had an abundance of vegetables for her family all winter long.

When their children were grown, Mrs. and Mr. Proteau began spending their winters in Florida, and would return to Newport for the summer.

As time went on, Mrs. Proteau’s health started to decline. She made the decision to move back to Canada where assisted living was a safer option for her. She lived there until the end of her life.

At her final request, a funeral Mass at St. Jean Bosco in Magog was celebrated on July 28. Her burial will take place on Friday, August 22 at 11 a.m. at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Newport. A celebration of her life will follow at the Gateway Center in Newport for family and friends.

obit TinkerDolores M. Tinker

Dolores M. Tinker, 75, of Orleans died on August 14, 2014, at her daughter’s home in Barton.

She was born on March 24, 1939, in Barnston, Quebec, to Ovide and Irene (Viens) Ducharme.

She liked to travel, cook, knit, crochet, and take care of her flowers. She especially enjoyed feeding the birds and watching wildlife around her home. Her family enjoyed her homemade strawberry-rhubarb pies.

She is survived by her children: Eugene Tinker and his significant other, Stephanie Gee, of New Ipswich, New Hampshire, Susan Cloutier and her husband, Michael, of Barton, and Homer Tinker of Brownington; her significant other, Paul Montague of Orleans; her grandchildren: Rebecca and her husband, Chad Saari, Samantha Tinker, Zachary Tinker, Christopher Wells and his significant other, Jamie Pell, Geromy Wells, and Alexandria Cloutier; her great-grandchildren: Tommy, Geno and Paige Saari, Avah Frasca, Joshua, Brooke and Melanie Wells, and Jazmin Wells; her brother and sisters: Paul Ducharme of Leesburg, Florida, Lucille LeBlanc and her husband, Louis, of Clinton, Massachusetts, and Georgette Stratton and her husband, George, of Beebe, Quebec; and by several nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by the following brothers: Gerard, Leo, and Claude Ducharme.

Funeral services will be held at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, August 20, at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in Orleans, with the Reverend Timothy Naples celebrating a Mass of Christian burial. Interment will follow in Pleasantview Cemetery in Orleans.

Should friends desire, contributions in her memory may be made to the Norris Cotton Cancer Center, 1080 Hospital Drive, St. Johnsbury, Vermont 05819; or to the Orleans Essex VNA and Hospice, Inc., 46 Lakemont Road, Newport, Vermont 05855.

Online condolences at

Andrew Eric Wright

Andrew Eric Wright, 46, died suddenly at his home in Littleton, New Hampshire, on August 6, 2014. He had been struggling with MS (multiple sclerosis) for the last 16 years.

He was born to Al and Nancy Wright and raised in Littleton.

Mr. Wright enjoyed hunting and fishing trips to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His pride and joy was his granddaughter, Arianna, and his motorcycle.

He is survived by his parents, Al and Nancy Wright; two brothers: Aldis Wright and his wife, Heather, and Anthony Wright, all of Littleton. He leaves the love of his life, Vanessa English; their daughter, Patricia, and son, Nick, and his stepson, Eric, and a very special granddaughter, Arianna. He is also survived by the following aunts and uncles: Edie Stevens of Orleans, Betty and her husband, Bob, Gravel of Woodbury, Harold Patrick of Kentucky, Bev Patrick of Hardwick, Hazen Wright and his wife, Alice, of Coventry, Mark Wright and his wife, Elaine, of Glover, Nancy Larose and her husband, Bob, of Glover, Kay Friend and her husband, Francis, of Pownal, and Milo Wright of Glover. He also leaves behind several nieces, nephews, and cousins.

A beautiful celebration of his life was held on August 16, at the VFW in Littleton. This event was well attended by his family and friends.

Donations may be made to the National MS Society, P.O. Box 4527, New York, New York 10163; or to Vanessa English and family, 50 Lilac Lane, Littleton, New Hampshire 03561.

Death notice

Beverly Rebecca Emerson

Beverly Rebecca Emerson, 54, of St. Petersburg, Florida, died on August 3, 2014, in St. Petersburg.

A gathering for family and friends will be held on Saturday, August 30, at the East Side Restaurant in Newport from 12 to 2 p.m.

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