Obituaries March 14, 2018

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Brenda J. Giannino

Brenda J. Giannino of San Diego, California, died peacefully, with her dear friend Maria at her side, on February 13, 2018, at the age of 75.

She was born October 10, 1942, to Laurence “Bud” Whiteman and Simonne (Goulet) Whiteman in North Conway, New Hampshire. Mr. Whiteman died in 1944, serving the military in World War II. Simonne married Bradley A. Thomas Jr., of Newport, on August 20, 1949.

Ms. Giannino grew up in Newport, graduating from Sacred Heart High School in 1960. She attended the Butera School of Art in Boston, Massachusetts, utilizing her creative talent. Later she attended a secretarial school, also in Boston, then went on to work at the Veterans Administration offices in Washington, D.C. It was there she met Phillip Giannino, who was in the Army at that time. They later married and she became a stepmother to his four children. In 1971, they drove across country to relocate in San Diego, California.

Ms. Giannino was very talented in many crafts and pastimes including scrapbooking, card making, knitting, and crocheting many afghans over the years. Above all, her favorite pastime was bingo; she was extremely lucky in her weekly habit. She was a very kind and generous person to all she knew and especially those she worked with, establishing many lifelong friendships. June and Doug Whitehead and Marina Stephenson were with her until the end. And her very dear caretaker and friend Maria Galvan never left her side.

She is survived by her siblings: Gary Thomas and his wife, Patty, and their daughter, Joanna Brinckerhoff and her husband, Drew; Karen Thomas Blais and Phil Sheltra, and her children, Jaime Comtois and her husband, Jon, and their son Gus; and Anthony Blais and Heather Sanchez, and his son, Ryan.

She is also survived by her two daughters, Lisa Burns and her husband, Steven, and Valerie Penton and her husband, Robert; her stepchildren: Phyllis Carpenter and her husband, John, Barbara Phillips, and Wayne Giannino; her grandchildren: Stephanie Hartz and her husband, Nate, Matthew Burns, Cameron Burns, Angela Carpenter, Jeremiah Carpenter, Carrie Phillips, and David Phillips.

She was predeceased by her husband, Phillip Giannino; her stepson, Phillip Giannino III, her father, Laurence Whiteman; her mother, Simonne P. Thomas; her stepfather, Bradley A. Thomas Jr., and her nephew, Logan Blais.

Ms. Giannino will be interred at Pine Grove Cemetery in Newport, at the convenience of the family.

Friends and family who wish to honor Ms. Giannino’s love of animals, should make a donation to their local shelter or to the Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter, 502 Strawberry Acres, Newport, Vermont 05855 (


Loretta Coulombe Hunt

Loretta Coulombe Hunt of Newport died on Sunday, February 25, 2018, at the age of 97.

She was born July 17, 1920, in Berlin, New Hampshire, to Archelas and Elmira (Pomerleau) Coulombe. She grew up in Derby Line and attended Rock Island schools and business school at Stanstead College. She married Clyde Flinn of Holland, who predeceased her.

In February of 1960, she married the love of her life, Robert Hunt. They were fortunate to enjoy life to its fullest traveling, dancing and spending summers at their camp on Lake Salem in Derby, where their children, grandchildren, and friends were always welcome and all formed lasting memories. Mr. Hunt predeceased her in March of 1974.

Mrs. Hunt worked for many years in the fashion department of Montgomery Ward. After the store closed, she worked in real estate and at the Vermont Travel Service. She was an active parishioner at St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church. She also enjoyed reading, knitting, and crossword puzzles, and she was a lifelong fan of the Montreal Canadiens and the Boston Red Sox.

She is survived by her step-daughters: Sharon Kelley and her husband, Harold, of Kissimmee, Florida, and Janet Cartee and her husband, Roger, of Newport. She is also survived by four grandchildren: Philip Kelley and his wife, Amanda, of Orlando, Florida, Peter Cartee and his wife, Kristi, of Huntersville, North Carolina, Christa Goodwin and her husband, Shawn, of Deltona, Florida, and Jeffrey Cartee of Providence, Rhode Island. She also leaves three great-grandchildren: Zachary and Ethan Kelley of Orlando, and Tyler Cartee of Huntersville. She is also survived by her nieces: Virgina Dishaw and her husband, Donald, of Waterford, Connecticut, Patricia Whelan and her husband, Douglas, of Charleston, South Carolina, Joann Tong, and Richard and Edward Coulombe, all of Waterford, and Martha Pollak and her husband, Andrew, of East Haddam, Connecticut; and by numerous great-nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by two brothers: Lawrence and Gerald Coulombe; and her nephew Donald Coulombe.

A Mass was celebrated on March 10, at St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Newport.

Should friends desire, donations can be made in Mrs. Hunt’s name to the Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter, 502 Strawberry Acres, Newport, Vermont 05855 (, or to Felines and Friends, P.O. Box 1316, Newport, Vermont 05855 (

Online condolences can be shared at


Ralph Wayne Keister

Ralph Wayne Keister, 77, of Conowingo, Maryland, died on March 1, 2018, at Upper Chesapeake Medical Center in Bel Air, Maryland.

Born in Winchester, Virginia, he was the son of Ralph A. and Juanita M. (Martin) Keister. A veteran of the U.S. Army, he served during the Vietnam War, and was a member of the American Legion in Vermont and the Elks in Havre de Grace, Maryland. He umpired for basketball, baseball, softball, and soccer. One of his most memorable highlights was when the professional umpires went on strike from 1978 to 1979 and he was then called up to umpire for the Baltimore Orioles. He was an avid golfer in Maryland and in Vermont where he was known as “Moose.” He loved to sing and enjoyed Karaoke. He was also a crabber and fisherman.

Mr. Keister is survived by his wife, Linda C. Keister; his daughter, Kimberly L. Merrill and her husband, William Thomas; his son, Philip Wayne Keister, and his wife, Jennifer; his grandchildren: Stephen Thomas Merrill, Tyler Evans Merrill, and Lillian Marie Keister; his brother, Ronald Keister; and many nieces, nephews, and extended family.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his sister, Marilyn Mellion.

Services were held on March 5, at McComas Funeral Home in Abingdon, Maryland with the Reverend Clyde G. Morsberger officiating. Interment was at Highview Memorial Gardens in Fallston, Maryland.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Disabled American Veterans, 31 Hopkins Plaza, Baltimore, Maryland 21201.

Condolences may be left on the guestbook at


Chineera Renee Nelson

It is with great sadness that the family of Chineera Renee Nelson announces her death on March 3, 2018, in Lebanon, New Hampshire, at the age of 31.

Ms. Nelson was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on December 7, 1986. She attended grade school in Philadelphia. After graduating high school, she became an active advocate for raising awareness for sickle cell disease.

Being born with the disease herself, she became the face of hope for many sickle cell anemia sufferers and their families. She provided a sense of comfort to those plagued by the disease, encouraging them to fight to the very end.

And that’s exactly what she did. Ms. Nelson was a warrior.

Through the duration of her fight, she was never silent about what was most important — her daughter, Joali. She wanted nothing but the best for her. Ms. Nelson surrounded her with family, love, and support. She raised Joali to be a fighter, to be strong, and to understand that sometimes, it takes a team to win.

Joali fought for her mom every day.

Ms. Nelson lost her fight to sickle cell but she has left a very strong message behind: Never stop fighting. Never stop looking for a cure.

She is survived by her daughter Joali Lanee Frisby; her parents, Cheryl Nelson and Mareo Oldacre; and her sisters: Siliah, Jade, Charelle, and Serene; as well as a numerous family members and devoted friends.

A memorial was held to celebrate Ms. Nelson’s incredible life at: The House of the Good Shepard Resurrection in Philadelphia on March 10.

Donations are appreciated and may be made out to her sister, Siliah Nelson, or her mother, Cheryl Nelson.

Online condolences may be shared at


Elizabeth Ruth Redington

Elizabeth Ruth Redington, 94, daughter of Thomas and Isabel (Derusha) Redington, died at her family home in Barton on March 2, 2018.
Born prematurely on April 20, 1923, in St. Johnsbury maternity hospital, she was the second child of the family. Her brother Charles Frederick, who always went by Frederick, was five years old at the time of her birth. After graduation from Barton Academy in 1943, Ms. Redington’s career at the Howard Bank spanned 41 years. She enjoyed her job, meeting people, and the fact that she could work close to her home.
She lived in her family home in Barton all of her life and spent idyllic days at the nearby family camp, Draycott Lodge, on Shadow Lake. Her stories at camp abound with autobiographical tales of fishing, swimming, wildlife, summer friends, the dancehall, and chaperones. Her Barton stories revolve around the family blacksmith shop, mother, adventures with friends, constructing with her brother, and the musical band made of friends and family called The Happy Gang. Ms. Redington was proud to spend her life devoted to the care of her family and friends.
She and her brother were inseparable and Ms. Redington made sure that he was included in all the family activities. Due to Frederick’s handicaps this required a tremendous effort which Ms. Redington took on from an early age until her brother died at the age of 56. Her compassion, strength, and endless time to help others was evident throughout her life; in the last month of her life she sought ways to help others and expressed how much she would like to continue living for another ten years if she was able to help others. Like many Vermonters, Ms. Redington was born into a family of storytellers. With her exceptional memory, she entertained, consoled, and intrigued listeners with her repertoire of oral stories. Her anecdotal history was her way of sharing with her listeners her love of the people and places in the Northeast Kingdom. Curiosity made Ms. Redington ever interested in other’s stories and the changing world. She was not shy to voice her opinions, or advocate for the less fortunate, and yet was humble enough to revise her opinions as times changed.
She took up motorcycling until her early eighties, and against all wishes climbed under the camp to fix the plumbing in her late eighties. She was intrigued by technological advances and enjoyed participating in e-mail so that she could connect with family afar. Until recently, she served on the board of the Crystal Lake Falls Historical Association, while also contributing time and knowledge to several of the local historical societies. A room in the Barton Historical Museum is furnished with objects and archives, contributed from her family’s blacksmith shop.
Ms. Redington was a member of many community groups over the years, including the Order of the Eastern Star, the Victory Corps, and Shadow Lake Association. As a member of the Barton Academy Alumni she attended every alumni banquet for 72 years from the year of her graduation until the year of 2015.
She was predeceased by her father, Tom; her mother, Isabel; and her brother Frederick; as well as her aunts: Jen Chesley and Gertrude Sawyer; and her uncle Guy Sawyer.
She is survived by her longtime friend Barbara Hobbs. She is also survived by her cousins: Stuart Barter of Barton, Christine Rainer of Canada, Wayne Barter of Belgium, Elizabeth Rainer of Canada, Mary Ireland of England, Anne Letica of New Zealand, and Geoff Redington of Australia; and by her extended family.
There will be an announcement for a graveside service to be held at a later date.
Those wishing to do so may make a donation in her name to the Crystal Lake Historical Association, P.O. Box 398, Barton, Vermont 05822.
Online condolences may be shared at

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