Obituaries & Services 7.21.21

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Betty Comstock Prevost

Betty Comstock Prevost, 94, of Barton, died on July 7, 2021.

Betty was born in 1927 to Leigh and Leona Comstock in Barton.

While growing up, Betty was always active and she loved all outdoor sports including tobogganing, skiing, ice skating, and swimming.  Betty was what was then known as a “tomboy” and like one of her heroes, Katherine Hepburn, eschewed dresses and preferred to wear pants.

Betty never avoided a challenge and was always a hard worker.  In high school, Betty taught swimming lessons and was a lifeguard at Crystal Lake State Beach.  Betty also wanted to qualify as a water safety instructor (WSI), but the only course available to her at that time was taught in New Hampshire.  So Betty took a bus to New Hampshire, attended a six-day program at Lake Winnipesaukee, and earned her WSI.

In addition to her schooling and her numerous outdoor activities, Betty also worked with her dad at the family business, Comstock’s Market, located on Main Street in Barton.

Betty attended Barton Academy for both primary school and high school.  It was at Barton Academy that Betty became an avid reader of books and a lifelong learner.

After graduating from Barton Academy, Betty went on to achieve a bachelor of arts degree in education from the University of Vermont (UVM) in 1949.  Betty was an excellent student and excelled in her studies at UVM.

Betty was on the women’s fencing team and was also the resident advisor at the historic Redstone Hall for her last two years at UVM.

During her summers at college, Betty worked as a counselor and swimming instructor at Songadeewin, a private summer camp for girls, located on Willoughby Lake.  One of her important (and not so popular) jobs at Songadeewin required Betty to play “Reveille” on her bugle every morning in order to wake the campers and to announce the new day.

After graduation from college, Betty obtained a teaching position at Barton Academy where she taught sixth grade.  She remained as a teacher at Barton Academy for two years.

In 1950, she met and later became engaged to Roger “Bucky” Prevost.  Betty and Roger were married in 1951.  In 1954, Betty and Roger had their only child, Betsey.

Thereafter, Betty became the full-time bookkeeper for the family business, Barton Cleaners, and for numerous other businesses that she and Roger owned and operated over the years.

On July 4, 1961, while attending the family Fourth of July celebration in Beebe Plain, Betty was invited by a family member to go to Dufferin Heights Golf Club in Stanstead, Quebec, where she was introduced to what became her lifelong passion, golf.

Once bitten by the golfing bug, Betty could be found on the golf course six days a week during the all too short golfing season in northern Vermont.

As her proficiency in golf grew, Betty achieved many awards and honors.  Starting in 1964, Betty won the Women’s Club Championship at the Orleans Country Club in Orleans — seven times.  She also came in fourth in the Vermont State Women’s Golf Association (VSWGA) Championship and was a regular at the VSWGA State Days.  When a State Day event was held in a location such as Manchester, Betty and the other members of her intrepid foursome would rise well before dawn in order to get to the course on time.

Betty also helped many women who wanted to learn the game of golf and she gave back to the sport by calculating the handicaps for all the women at Orleans Country Club for both their local handicaps as well as their VSWGA handicaps.  Betty did this work before the advent of computers, so she had to enter every score by hand and to then calculate every handicap for every women golfer at Orleans Country Club.

Betty was also involved in many of the aspects of community life in Barton.  She was a member of the Barton United Church and served on the church board for several terms.  She was a Sunday school teacher and served on numerous church committees.  She also gave her time to the Barton library and to other community organizations.

Betty also enjoyed traveling with her family.  Some of the memorable family trips included a Christmas holiday stay at the Château Frontenac in Quebec City, a trip to San Francisco and the wine country, numerous trips to Arizona, including visiting Sedona, a Christmas and New Year’s holiday excursion to Maui, Hawaii, and an Autumn trip to New York City which included seeing Carol Channing on Broadway in Hello Dolly.

Betty was predeceased by her parents; by her brother Dean Comstock; and by her husband, Roger.  Betty is survived by her daughter Betsey Prevost Ricciardi; and by her son-in-law Alfred W. Ricciardi of Scottsdale, Arizona; as well as by her beloved cat, Mr. Mittens.  She is also survived by her sisters-in-law:  Regina Provost of Derby, Marguerite Smyrski of Montpelier, and Sally Fassett of Singer Island, Florida; as well as numerous nieces and nephews on both the Comstock and Prevost/Provost side of the family.

At Betty’s request, no funeral services will be held.

There will be a celebration of life luncheon honoring Betty’s life at a later time.  Details to be provided

Given Betty’s passion and love for animals, in lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in her name to Pope Memorial Frontier Animal Shelter, 4473 Barton Orleans Road, Orleans, Vermont 05860,

Condolences can be sent to the family at P.O. Box 345, Barton, Vermont 05822.


Jean Roch Degre

Jean Roch “John” Degre, 77, of Albany, died on July 10, 2021, in St. Johnsbury, with his son by his side.

He was born on June 24, 1944, in Granby, Quebec, to Leo and Jeanne Degre.  On May 30, 1964, he married Gene Ann Hauver who predeceased him on December 17, 1986.

John was a member of the U.S. Army, graduating as a radio teletype operator from signal school in Fort Gordon, Georgia.  After his posting in Germany, John and Gene Ann returned home to start their family.  He worked in farming and construction.

John took great pride in his children and grandchildren and their work ethic.  He enjoyed morning visits at Bob’s QuickStop and also playing poker anywhere and everywhere he could. He was a life member of American Legion Post #21.

John is survived by his partner Patricia; his children: son Tracy Degre and wife, Michelle, and by daughter Marcy Paul; by his grandchildren: Christopher Degre and wife, Sarah, Jonathan Degre and fiancé, Brittany Perrault, and Myra Degre; and great-granddaughters Ronni Rae and Demi Jean.

He is also survived by his brothers: Andre Degre and wife, Ruby, Richard Degre and wife, Jan, Jacques Degre and wife, Carol; and sister Mireille and husband, Remi Gagnon; as well as several beloved nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his wife Gene Ann, grandsons Ryan and Tyler Coulter, and son-in-law Mario Paul.

A special thank-you to his neighbor Mike for all he did for him and St. Johnsbury Nursing and rehab for his care the last few months.  Should friends desire, contributions in his memory may be made to Orleans Essex Visiting Nurses Association, 46 Lakemont Road, Newport, Vermont 05855.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, July 17, at the New Hope Bible Church in Irasburg with Pastor George Lawson officiating.  Interment will follow in Derby Center Cemetery.

Online condolences at


Lorraine Josephine Brunelle

Lorraine Josephine (Giguere) Brunelle, 81, of Barton died at her home on July 9,

Lorraine Josephine (Giguere) Brunelle, 81, of Barton died at her home on July 9, 2021.

She was born on January 5, 1940, in St. Johnsbury, to Alexandrine (Cormier) and Harry Giguere, who predeceased her. On August 23, 1958, she married Frank Arthur Brunelle, who predeceased her on May 10, 2011.

Lorraine graduated from Mt. Saint Joseph’s Academy in St. Johnsbury.  She worked at St. Johnsbury Trucking from 1970 until 1974. She worked alongside her husband, Frank, at the A&P in Barton.  After briefly working at the unemployment office in Newport, she began working as a secretary for May and Davies, a law firm in Barton (now known as Davies Law, PLC) in 1978, where she was an extremely valued and loved employee.  She continued to work there until her retirement in 2006.  A mere six months later, she returned to May and Davies to work for another four and a half years, before her final retirement in October, 2011.

Lorraine was a member of the St. Paul’s Catholic Church.  She spent countless hours knitting prayer shawls for the local hospitals, where she also volunteered.  She spent many hours bowling with her dear friends, Sally Provost and Helene Thibault.  She was extremely grateful for the love and support of her friends Pam Poginy of Barton, and Sara Davies Coe of Brownington.

Lorraine is survived by her children: Michael Brunelle of Barton, and Frances Marie Sargent and her husband, William, of Christiansburg, Virginia; grandchildren: Christopher Sargent and Andrea Delaura; and great-grandchildren: Jazzelle Roberts, Donovan Farmer, and Michael and Anthony Sargent; cousins: Robert and Muriel Heon, Sylvia James, Irene Richardson, and Jenne Hale.

Funeral services were held on July 16 at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Barton with Father Curtis Miller officiating.  Interment followed at Mt. Calvary Cemetery in St. Johnsbury.

Should friends desire, contributions in her memory may be made to the Orleans Essex Visiting Nurses Association and Hospice Inc., 46 Lakemont Road, Newport, Vermont 05855.

Online condolences may be made at


Derick Wayne Blake

Derick Wayne Blake, 54, of Derby, died suddenly on July 3, 2021, at his home.

He was born on October 10, 1966, in Newport, a beloved son of Sharyn (Greenwood) Blake and the late Wayne Harley Blake.

Derick owned Blakey’s Car Care.  He took great pride in his work and he was one of the best.  He ran his business out of Key Auto, and in past years he worked at Pepin’s Truck Repair, Harvest Equipment, and Champlain Valley Equipment.  He also bought and sold vehicles, ATVs, and snowmobiles.

Among his many hobbies, he enjoyed hunting, fishing, snowmobiling, buying and selling, playing horseshoes and cards, detailing cars, and watching his favorite driver Dale Earnhardt Sr. (NASCAR) and the Boston Bruins.  Derick was a very hard worker.  He liked to hang out with his friends and would do anything for them.  He loved people and striking up conversation with all.  He had a tough exterior but was kind-hearted on the inside.  He loved his animals, especially his boxers.

He is survived by his mother, Sharyn Blake, of Derby, by his brothers: Randy Blake and his companion, Kathy Montminy, of Newport, and Bradley Blake and his wife, Suzie, of Derby; by his daughters: Amanda Blake and Shelby Poutre and her husband, Jordan; by his grandchildren: Ryder, Kolten, Raye-lynn Ferrin, and Aliyah Poutre.  He is also survived by his nieces and nephews: Travis Blake and his wife, Jessica, of North Troy, Nicholas Blake and his wife, Iris, of Morgan, Brittney and Brady Blake of Derby; great-nieces and -nephews: Jaxson, Carsyn, Graceyn, Jasmine, Cedar, and Cypress Blake; by his aunts and uncles: Bruzz (Glen) Greenwood and his wife, Deb, of Florida, Ellie and Stan Willis of Orleans, Betty and Paul Racine of Orleans, Linda and Gordon Chadburn of Irasburg, and numerous cousins.  He leaves many special friends, especially: Pat Kilday, Kyle Barry, Bobby Morin, Eggy Willis, Mike Choquette,  Kyle Willis and Denise King.

Funeral and burial service information will be posted at later date.

Online condolences at


Jeannine Paquin

Jeannine (Auger) Paquin, 91, of Stanstead, Quebec (formerly of Newport Center), died in Magog, Quebec, on July 1, 2021.

She was born on September 7, 1929, in Granby, Quebec, to Urbain and Catherine (Leduc) Auger.

On July 17, 1954, in Granby, she married Raymond Paquin who predeceased her in 2008.  In 1963, they moved to North Troy, where they farmed for several years.  She also worked as a seamstress at Newport Plastics and Slalom Skiwear.  She and her husband also owned The Royal Restaurant in Newport and catered many weddings and events.  After retirement they settled in Stanstead, and enjoyed winters in Florida and traveling.  She was energetic, drove her car, lived independently at her home, and on a bowling team until the end of her life.  Most of all she loved to be surrounded by her family and friends.

She is survived by her children: Danielle Paquin (Barry Parmenter) of Derby, Michelle Cote of Manchester New Hampshire, and Jean-Guy Paquin (Marie Brasseur) of North Troy; her grandchildren: Shawn Carrier, Eric Carrier, Stephen Carrier, Nicholas Cote, and Raymond Paquin; her great-grandchildren: Hailey Carrier, Kaleigh Cote, Abigail Carrier, Hunter Carrier, and Bria Cote; by her siblings: Robert Auger (Yvette d’Amboise) of Sherbrooke, Quebec, Normand Auger (Therese Riendeau) of Charlottesville, Virginia, Claudette Chalifoux (Gilles) of Manchester, New Hampshire, and Philippe Auger of North Troy; sisters-in-law: Anita Auger, Yvonne Paquin, Gertrude Paquin, and Rita Paquin; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her granddaughter Amelia Paquin; her great-granddaughter Emily Cote; son-in-law Alain Cote; her parents Urbain and Catherine (Leduc) Auger; her brothers: Gaston Auger, Richard Auger, and his wife, Francoise Lacasse Auger; Jean-Claude Auger and his wife Monique Fournier Auger; her sister Micheline Auger; and sister-in-law Gail Colburn Auger.

The family would like to take this time to say thank you to the Magog Hospital, doctors, staff and their family and friends for the love, care, and comfort they gave to the family’s loving mother during her final days.  May God bless them all.

Due to COVID-19 border restrictions, a funeral service will be planned at a later date in Newport.


France Lessard

France Lessard, 63, of Davie, Florida, previously from Newport, died on July 13, 2021.

She was born in St. Georges, Quebec, and became a U.S. naturalized citizen as a teenager when the family moved to Newport.

France was an exemplary pianist and musician.  She began playing piano at a very young age and continued to use her talents as the school accompanist at Sacred Heart High School and carried her love of music with her throughout her life.  She spent most of her working career as a legal secretary/paralegal for law firms in Vermont and Florida.  She was fluent in French and often acted as a translator when needed.  She was a meticulous worker, never missing any details.  Mostly she will be remembered as a social, fun-loving person.  Although she returned to Vermont for a period of time in the early 2000s to be close to family, she always felt drawn back to the warm south, the Sunshine State.

She is survived by her sister, Suzie (Lessard) Wheeler, and her husband, Richard; her sister-in-law Janet Lessard; special niece and nephew Ashlee LaRose and Matthew Lessard; her close cousin Jeanne Hamblett; extended family in Quebec; and her special friend and partner, Gary Provencher, from Davie, Florida.  She was predeceased by her parents, Jean and Fabienne Lessard, and her brother Rejean Lessard.

There will be no funeral services at this time.  Online condolences at


James Edward Kinney

James Edward Kinney, 81, of Island Pond, died on July 14, 2021, at his home.

He was born on September 7, 1939, in Hardwick, to John and Dorothy (Ferris) Kinney.

He graduated from Hardwick Academy in 1958, and entered the United States Navy and was stationed in Hawaii and San Diego, and flew all over the Pacific.

During his lifetime he was a custom cabinet maker.  His hobbies included ice fishing, deer and moose hunting, skiing, and working in the wood shop.  He enjoyed many trips to Alaska and Montana to work, hunt, and visit with sisters, nieces, and nephews.

James was a member of the American Legion Post # 80 of Island Pond.

He is survived by fiancée, Rita Dumas, of Island Pond; his son Clark Lawrence Kinney and wife, Janet; and their children: Crystal, Cody, and Courtney; and great-grandchildren: Dean, Camden, Carter, and Garrett of Gloucester, Virginia.  He is also survived by his siblings:  Katherine “Kasey” Groom and her husband, Bob, of Boise, Idaho; Alberta Lefebvre of North Port, Florida; Anna Lou Zane of Whitefield, New Hampshire; and Alson Kinney and his wife, Cathy, of Island Pond; Lida Knudsen and her husband, Ron, of Rockland, Massachusetts; Evelyn Kinney and Alan Vallieres of Island Pond; and cousins: Albert Clark Kinney III and Patricia Kinney of Jacksonville, Florida, and Linda Kinney of Hardwick; also by many nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his parents, a daughter Kristin Kinney and his sister Susan Gaboriault.

Friends were held on Monday, July 19, at the Curtis Britch and Bouffard Funeral Home in Island Pond, Vermont, followed by military honors at the funeral home.

Online condolences may be made at




Donald King

Funeral service for Donald King of West Glover will be held on Friday, July 23, at 11 a.m. at the West Glover Congregational Church.  Following the service, friends are invited to gather at Donald’s home at 588 King Road for socializing and light refreshments.


Pauline R. Hodgdon

Friends and family of Pauline (LeMay) Hodgdon are invited to attend her funeral service at St. Andrew’s church in Waterbury on July 31 at 11 a.m.  A reception will follow at the church hall after the service. There will be no calling hours and there will be no graveside service.  Pauline died at her home in Waterbury on March 5, 2021.


Brenda Simons

Funeral services for Brenda Simons, who died on April 2, 2021, will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, July 24, at the Brownington Center Church with the Reverend Danny Prue officiating.  Interment will follow in Lakeview Cemetery, Westmore.


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