Obituaries November 30, 2016

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Gaston J. Lefebvre

Gaston J. Lefebvre, 87, died peacefully at his home in Derby on November 21, surrounded by his loving wife and children.

He was born January 13, 1929, in Stanstead, Quebec, as the fourth child of Elphage and Maria (Beniot) Lefebvre.

On June 10, 1950, Mr. Lefebvre and Rita (Veilleux) married and moved from Quebec to Holland to build their life together on a dairy farm while raising eight children. Upon retiring from their farm in 1979, they moved to Newport, where they owned and operated the White Cap Laundromat for 26 years.

In retirement, Mr. and Mrs. Lefebvre became snowbirds, enjoying Seminole, Florida, for 27 winters, and making many friends while golfing, bowling, shuffleboarding, and playing cards, and continued their friendships and activities in the summer months at their home in Derby.

Mr. Lefebvre’s sense of humor brought laughter to many, and he was known for his strong work ethic, strength of character, and always thinking of others.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Rita Lefebvre; and by his children: Andre Lefebvre and his wife, Sherry, of Morgan, Robert Lefebvre and his wife, Mindy, of Port Charlotte, Forida, Ivan Lefebvre and his wife, Gerri, of West Chesterfield, New Hampshire, Denise Sykes and her husband, Ken, of Morgan, Raymond Lefebvre and his wife, Diane, of Laurel, Maryland, Mark Lefebvre, of Milton, and Lynn Petry and her husband, Damian, of New London, New Hampshire; and by son-in-law Bill Worth, of Newport.

Mr. Lefebvre is also survived by 18 of his beloved grandchildren with their spouses; and 15 great-grandchildren.

He was predeceased by his loving daughter, Sylvie Worth in 2003; by his parents; a brother; and two sisters; along with many others he valued in his lifetime.

Calling hours will be held on Friday, December 2, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the Curtis-Britch-Converse-Rushford Funeral Home, located at 4670 Darling Hill Road in Newport.

The funeral will be held at St. Edward’s Catholic Church in Derby Line on Saturday, December 3, at 11 a.m. There will be a procession from the funeral home to the church for anyone wishing to join the family.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Edward’s Catholic Church.

Online condolences may be made at


Robert Bruce McKay

In the early morning hours of November 24, 2016, Robert Bruce McKay died quietly at Maple Lane Nursing Home in Barton with family at his side. Bruce, as he was known, was 89 years old.

Mr. McKay was born in Boston, Massachusetts, on November 22, 1927, at Lying-In Hospital. He was the first child of Myrtle Adams and Alexander Roy McKay.

As a child, he lived in Quincy, Massachusetts, before moving to Holden, Massachusetts, when he was 11 years old. While there, he was a member of the First Baptist Church of Holden. After graduating from Holden High School, he attended Wilbraham Academy, one of the 15 oldest preparatory schools on the east coast. Mr. McKay graduated from Eastern Illinois University, with a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry.

In 1939, he joined the Boy Scouts and eventually became scoutmaster to Troop #182 in Holden — a position he held for nearly two decades. He was happy teaching young scouts to explore and thrive in the outdoors with fellow scout leaders Herb Holmes, Al Court, and Walt Koenig. Their rainy camping trips made for legendary stories.

Mr. McKay also spent many years as a volunteer on the Holden Fire Department. As a high school student, he gleefully left school whenever the siren rang as so many of the town’s firemen were serving in World War II.

Near the end of the war, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, which became the U.S. Air Force at the conclusion of the war, making Mr. McKay a charter member of the U.S. Air Force. He was stationed in Hawaii and in Guam, earning the rank of corporal.

Mr. McKay worked in real estate with his father at A. Roy and R. Bruce McKay Real Estate before beginning his 20-year teaching career at Westboro High School where he was genuinely fond of his students. After retiring from teaching, he enjoyed working for the Environmental Protection Agency.

Among Mr. McKay’s many passions were hunting, fly fishing (tying his own flies), and photography. He studied at the Maine Photographic Workshop. He loved to take road trips across the United States, to Prince Edward Island, Canada, and to Scotland. He enjoyed woodworking, creating wonderful nooks and crannies in his home, building unique and functional kitchen cabinets, and crafting fun trinkets for his grandchildren. Mr. McKay was also active in the Stepfamily Association of America. He was proud of his Scottish heritage and was a member of Clan MacKay, USA.

In 1995, following his retirement, Mr. McKay moved to North Troy. He was active on the North Country Union High School Board and he served as a town lister.

Mr. McKay was a thirty-second degree Mason, a past Master of Union Lodge #16 Free and Accepted Masons of Troy, and Deputy District Grand Master of the tenth Masonic district composed of seven lodges in the Northeast Kingdom.

Mr. McKay was preceded in death by: his first wife, Jean Court, in 1961; his son David Bruce McKay; his son-in-law Peter Brewer; and granddaughter Courtney LaFrance.

He is survived by Anne Clowes of North Troy, his beloved wife of 54 years with whom he raised their children. Mr. McKay also leaves three sons: Donald McKay and his wife, Sherri, of Montague, Massachusetts, Scott McKay and his partner, Wendy Ong, of Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Keith McKay and his wife, Christine, of Los Angeles, California. He is also survived by four daughters: Linda Brewer of Rutland, Massachusetts, Judith Lowry of Ozark, Missouri, Jennifer Kennison and her husband, Dana, of Montgomery, and Gail Lacey and her husband, Phil, of St. Petersburg, Florida. He also leaves Lynn Bissett of Coventry, Connecticut, Michael Lowry of Nevada, Missouri, and Laura Need, M.D., of Arlington, Massachusetts.

Twelve grandchildren were lucky to call Mr. McKay their grandpa: Joshua Lowry and his wife, Rachel, Jesse McKay, Matthew B. Howrey and his wife, Michelle, Brianne McKay, Matthew Brewer, Carly Allen and her husband, Randy, Whitney (Lyra) McKay, Danielle McKay, Colin Lacey, Grady Kennison, Parker McKay, and Alexander McKay. He is also survived by nine great-grandchildren. Mr. McKay leaves his cherished sister Janel Carlson; his niece Krista Vinkemulder of Atlanta, Georgia; nephew Charles Vinkemulder and his wife, Lisa Scali; niece Sara Spidle and her husband, Ronald, all of Portland, Maine; brother-in-law John “Jack” Court and his wife, Sally, of Southington, Connecticut; many other nieces, nephews, and cousins, including his cousins in Prince Edward Island; his good friends William and Susi Kinsloe-Byers; and Mr. McKay’s longtime neighbor Herbert Holmes.

He will be remembered for his kindness and his sense of humor.

Calling hours will be held from 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 3. A Masonic funeral service will be held on Sunday, December 4, at 1 p.m. Both will be located at Curtis-Britch-Converse-Rushford Funeral Home, 4670 Darling Hill Road, Newport.

A memorial service and interment will be in Holden later in the spring of 2017.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to C.A.R.E., a Masonic charity organization helping to identify at-risk children, 43 East Road-Berlin, Barre, Vermont 05641, or to The Alzheimer’s Association Research Division, 480 Pleasant Street, Watertown, Massachusetts 02472.

Online condolences may be sent to the family through the funeral home website at


Richard E. Messier

Richard E. Messier, 77, of Irasburg, died suddenly on November 24, 2016, in Newport.

He was born on December 30, 1938, in Franklin, to Elphege and Hilda (Garrow) Messier. On May 9, 1959, he married Joyce Lawson, who predeceased him on November 16, 1999.

He graduated from Newport Center High School. He was a dairy farmer all of his life on the family farm in Irasburg. His hobbies included hunting, fishing with Jim Greenwood, gardening, mowing his lawn, and in his younger years, square dancing with Joyce.

He is survived by his companion, Margaret Meunier, and her family of Newport Center; by his children: Clifford Messier of Brownington, Tammy Charland and her husband, Donald Jr., of Derby, Kenny Messier and his wife, Ann Marie, of Evansville, and Leonard Messier and his wife, Robin, of Lowell; by his daughter-in-law Jean Messier of Newport Center; by his grandchildren: Shaun Messier of Holland, Rodney Messier of New Hampshire, April Messier of Michigan, Derrick Charland of Newport Center, Jeff Charland of Derby, Katie Charland of Derby, Jessica Messier of Newport, Scott Messier of New York State, Tracy Messier of Newport, Amy Grady of Orleans, Sarah Fleurie of Barton, Adam Messier of Newport, and Sarah Fournier of Lowell; and by 22 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sisters: Jeannette Davis and her husband, Landon, of New York State, Pauline Pooler of Newport, Diane Geoffrey of Lowell, Pat Royer and her husband, Gerry, of Derby; and by many nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was predeceased by his son Michael Messier on November 7, 2005.

Funeral services were held on November 29 at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in Orleans where a Mass was celebrated by the Reverend Timothy Naples. Spring interment will be in Coventry Village Cemetery.

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


Beverly Jean Cleary Paris

Beverly Jean Cleary Paris, 85, of Lyndon Center died peacefully at home, surrounded by her loving family, on November 16, 2016, following a lengthy period of declining health.

She was born in Lyndon on December 9, 1930, the daughter of Edward L. and Emma E. (Dana) Cleary. Mrs. Paris was a lifelong resident of Lyndon. She attended Lyndon Corner Elementary School and graduated from Lyndon Institute in 1949.

On March 2, 1956, she married Lanny R. Paris, with whom she shared 60 cherished years. Mr. and Mrs. Paris had two children, Gary and Rhonda.

She was a homemaker, but worked in the Lyndon Corner Elementary School hot lunch program while her children attended school there. Later, she worked at the Colonnade Inn and at Bag Balm.

During her childhood, she spent every summer at the family’s camp at Shadow Lake in Glover. She truly enjoyed entertaining friends and family, and preparing meals to share with all who visited. Mrs. Paris loved anything to do with the lake: fishing, boating, waterskiing, or just floating in the water. She also enjoyed playing many lawn games with her family.

She was a loving daughter, wife, mother, sister, and aunt.

She is survived by her husband, Lanny; her daughter Rhonda Paris; her son Gary Paris and his companion, Shawna Wilkerson, all of Lyndon Center; and her sisters-in-law Sally Baillargeon, and Jean Conn; and several special and close nieces and nephews.

Mrs. Paris was predeceased by her parents; her husband’s parents, Dorothy S. King and Murray F. Paris; her sister Barbara Cleary Cameron; and brother-in-law George Gordon Cameron Jr.

At her request, there will be no visiting hours. A private graveside service will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations made in her memory may be directed to Caledonia Home Health and Hospice, 161 Sherman Drive, St. Johnsbury, Vermont 05819, or to the Upright Steeple Society, P.O. Box 224, Lyndon Corners, Vermont 05849.

Condolences may be shared privately with the family at


Fred Ellie Stevens

Fred Ellie Stevens, 60, of Brownington, beloved husband to Lila (Westmore) Stevens, died on November 22, 2016, in Newport.

He was born on March 4, 1956, in Newport. He was the son of Hiram and Norine (Clark) Stevens.

Mr. Stevens was the owner of Willoughby River Dog Supply.

He was a member and past president of the Northeast Kingdom Coon and Cat Club. He enjoyed hunting, feeding the birds, going to yard sales, and spending time with the loves of his life — his grandchildren.

He was a very big-hearted man who would give anyone a hand.

He is survived by his wife, Lila Stevens; and their children: Dana Stevens and his wife, Amanda, William Stevens, Wendy Sicard and her husband, Gary, and Rockwell and his companion, Allison Douglas. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Shane, Cayden, Cotter, Ava, Emmy Lou, and Lydia Stevens, and Cassandra, Joshua, and Daniel Sicard; and by his great-grandchildren: Savanah Sicard, and Addie and Alexis Sicard; by his brother Mark Stevens; and by many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was predeceased by his parents and his sister Velma.

A service was held on Monday, November 28, at the Westmore Community Church.

Burial will take place in the spring.

If friends desire, memorial contributions may be made in Mr. Steven’s memory to the Northeast Kingdom Coon and Cat Club: Attention Dana Stevens, 61 Stevens Road, Brownington, Vermont 05860.

Online condolences may be made at

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