September 26, 2018 Obituaries

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Graveside services


Fernand and Elizabeth “Betty” Gagne

A graveside service will be held for Fernand and Elizabeth “Betty” Gagne of Wales, Massachusetts, formerly of Troy, on Saturday, September 29, at 10:30 a.m. at the St. Ignatius of Loyola Cemetery in Lowell with Father Leo  Bilodeau officiating.  Mr. Gagne died on June 17, 2018.  Mrs. Gagne died on September 9, 2005.


Norma A. Locke

A graveside service for Norma A. Locke, who died on August 24, 2018, will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, September 29, at the Hillside Cemetery in East Charleston with the Reverend Rick Shover officiating.




James D. Benoit Sr.

It is with sadness in our hearts that we share with his Northeast Kingdom friends the unexpected death of James D. Benoit Sr. due to a tragic accident

He was born May 9, 1948, in Burlington to Robert and Marion Benoit.  James was the fifth son and brother to two younger sisters.  He was employed by G.S. Blodgett in Burlington until his retirement.  He may have been born in the city, but he turned country quickly when he purchased land and built his home in Lowell.  During his retirement, he worked at Jay Peak with friends who, over the years, had become family.

James will be remembered by friends and family as a very hard worker, unselfishly giving of his time and energy, and always with a smile or a smirk.  He had the ability to light up a room just by entering.  We have lost a good person, father, grandfather, and friend.

He is lovingly remembered by his children:  Laurie Dunn of Kentucky, Kelly Fair of Florida, and James D. Benoit Jr. of Orleans.  He also leaves friends from the very beginning of his country life:  Michael O’Keefe, Ray Barrett, Teddy Barrett, Jim Callahan, and others too numerous to mention.

He was predeceased by his son Scott Benoit.

Per his request, a private service was held on September 7.



Clare Louise Dyer (Allendorf)

Clare Louise Dyer (Allendorf), 81, of Underhill and Clearwater, Florida, and most recently of Derby, died peacefully on September 19, 2018, with family by her side.  The cause of death was multiple myeloma.

She was born on December 7, 1936, in Hardwick, a daughter of the late Catherine and Daniel Dyer.

Her early years were spent in Essex Junction.  She later moved with her parents and brothers Barry and Brian to St. Johnsbury, where she graduated as salutatorian of St. Johnsbury Academy, Class of 1954.

Clare attended the University of Vermont, graduating in 1958.  She studied home economics, but quickly learned she preferred engaging in political discourse.  She met her future husband, Peter Allendorf, in a political science class.  She was a proud member of the Alpha Delta Phi Sorority.  She attended many Green and Gold reunions, often with her parents, and fondly recalled her time as a Catamount.

Clare and Peter married in 1958 and raised three children in Underhill.  She taught at Mount Mansfield Union High School, later becoming a realtor in the Burlington area.

Clare moved to Clearwater in 1990 after her divorce, and enjoyed the warm weather of the sunshine state, and beautiful ocean sunsets.

While in Florida, she was an active member of the Vermont Club and the book club at Cove Cay where she lived.  She loved traveling with friends on cruises to destinations, including Panama, Haiti, Costa Rica, and the Bahamas.  While she had many friends, her family especially wants to thank Irma, Kathy, Marion, Hope, Shirley, and Mike for their kindness and support.

Clare was an inspiration to her beloved children and grandchildren and led by example through her political activism and civic engagement.  She worked with the League of Women Voters in Florida on voter registration.  She was a tireless advocate for issues she cared deeply about, such as reproductive rights and gun control legislation.  She was an active campaigner for Democratic candidates at the state and national level.

Clare is survived by her brother Barry Dyer of Sarasota, Florida; sister-in-law Merrie Dyer of Cazenovia, New York; and three children:  Laura Allendorf and her husband, Randy Fenninger, of Vienna, Virginia, Grant Allendorf and his wife, Susan, of Underhill, and Jeanne Allendorf Alexander and her husband, Peter, who live in Derby.  She is also survived by six grandchildren: John and Tom Fenninger, Ryan (Alyssa) and Danielle Allendorf, and Katie Clare and Liz Alexander.  Clare also had a great-granddaughter, Harper, daughter of Ryan and Alyssa.  She leaves behind her nieces and nephews:  Peg Dyer, Dan Dyer, Tom Dyer and his wife, Kristi, and daughters Eva and Ella, and Jason Dyer.

She was predeceased by her brother Brian, and sister-in-law Kay Coburn Dyer.

Following Clare’s wishes there will be no service.  A gathering of her friends and family may be forthcoming.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Clare’s memory may be made to the Norris Cotton Cancer Center, St. Johnsbury, Vermont.  Please include St. J 2-22919 on the check memo line and mail to:  Dartmouth-Hitchcock Development Office, Attention:  Jason Naugler, 1 Medical Center Drive, Lebanon, New Hampshire 03756

Online condolences at


Richard Mayhew


Richard Mayhew, 63, of Las Vegas, Nevada, died on September 4, 2018, in Las Vegas.

He was born on October 20, 1954, in Newport to Carl and Clara (Nelson) Mayhew.  On July 23, 1988, he married the former Colleen Hart, who survives him.

Mr. Mayhew was a supervisor in the construction business in Las Vegas.  His interests were playing golf, gardening, and traveling with his best friends.  He loved all animals, especially his cats.

He is survived by his wife, Colleen Mayhew, of Las Vegas; by his siblings:  Nelson Mayhew of Montgomery Center, Carl Mayhew Jr. and his wife, Margarette, of Tallahassee, Florida, and Barbara Mayhew and her friend, Garth, of North Troy; his sisters-in-law Pat Mayhew and Shannon Hart Healy and her husband, Tom; his aunt Ila Starr; his uncle Wayne Gray; several nieces, nephews, and cousins; and by his best friends Cheryl and Jeff Ward.

He was predeceased by his parents, Carl and Clara Mayhew.

Funeral services will be held at noon on Saturday, September 29, at the Curtis-Britch-Converse-Rushford Funeral Home at 4670 Darling Hill Road in Newport with the Reverend Kelly Deslauries officiating.  Friends may call at the funeral home on Saturday from 10 a.m. until the hour of the funeral.

Should friends desire, contributions in his memory may be made to Felines and Friends, P.O. Box 1316, Newport, Vermont 05855.

Online condolences at


Louise McKenney

Louise Mae (Burrill) McKenney, born on October 20, 1938, in Morrisville to the late Evelyn (Burbank) Burrill and Dean Burrill, died peacefully at home at age 79 on September 12, 2018, in South Burlington.

She grew up in Island Pond, attending school there as well as in Ottawa, Ontario.

She is survived by her daughters:  Susan (McKenney) Klein (and Karl Klein) of Fayston and Sharon (McKenney) Roy (and Alain Roy) of Derby Line; by grandchildren:  Kailey (Roy) Bentine (and Werther Bentine-Torres), Jordan Roy, Chantel Crawford, and Craig Crawford: as well as by two great-grandsons:  Parker and Liam Bentine.  She is also survived by her sister-in-law Joan Watson of Island Pond, of whom she was very fond; and by her nephew Wally Watson of Newport.

A private burial will be held in Bangor, Maine, at the convenience of the family.



Dorothy (Dee) E. Nault

It is with great sadness that the family of Dee Nault of Newport Center announce her death at the age of 86.  She will be very fondly remembered and deeply missed.

She was born in Connecticut, and lived with her parents, Peter and Mildred McGrath in New York.  They moved to Gilford, Connecticut, where she grew up, while also spending time in Barton.  She attended the University of Connecticut, studying agriculture, then moved to Vermont where she met and married Donald Nault on February 13, 1954.  They lived in Highgate, where they started their family before moving to Newport Center.

Her loves and interests included spending time with family and friends, hiking and living in Vermont, working her Mountain Mist Jersey dairy farm, gardening, and crafts shows.  She worked at the Goodrich Memorial Library, the Sacred Heart library, and the Orleans County Natural Resources Conservation District in Newport, and participated in various community activities.

Her family will greatly miss her kind and gentle nature.  She leaves behind her husband, Donald; her children:  Ramona, Donna, Fred, and Vernon; six grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Her daughter Mildred died in 2009.

A celebration of life memorial will be held at the Faith Lighthouse Assembly of God Church at 51 Alderbrook Road in Newport on Saturday, September 29, at 11 a.m.

The family invites you to visit the website to leave any condolences.



Mercedese Marie (Robillard) Patenaude

Mercedese Marie (Robillard) Patenaude, 86, of Newport Center died peacefully, surrounded by her family, on September 21, 2018, in Newport.

She was born on October 21, 1931, to Joseph and Marie Ange (Brasseur) Robillard.  On September 23, 1950, she married Leo M. Patenaude, who predeceased her on August 29, 2018.

Mrs. Patenaude had a wonderful life.  She enjoyed many things — sewing, farming, snowmobiling, and dancing.  Her greatest enjoyment was family — her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.  Her door was always open, and food was always on the table for family and friends.  She donated her time for making her famous rolls for many church and family functions.  Many family, friends, and strangers are honored to enjoy her handmade pillows and blankets as well.

She is survived by her sons:  Rene and his wife, Sharon, Luke and his wife, Amy, Norman and his wife, Yvette, and Andre and his wife, Deb; her daughters:  Monique Morin and her husband, Mike, Denise Patenaude and Tim, and Theresa Forbes and her husband, Mark; by 26 grandchildren; and 33 great-grandchildren.  She is also survived by her brothers:  Guy Robillard and his wife, Helen, of Irasburg, Denis Robillard and his wife, Helen, of Derby Line, and Leo Robillard of Newport; by her sisters:  Raymonde Royer of Stanstead, Quebec, Armande Boright of Wilder, and Louise Choquette and her husband, Ernest, of Newport Center; and by many nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her parents, and her brothers Real and Hilaire Robillard.

Special thanks to Bel-Aire Nursing Home and Bayada for the wonderful care of our loved one.

Friends may call for both Mercedese and Leo Patenaude from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, September 28, 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 Saturday, September 29, at St. Mary’s Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Newport where a Mass will be celebrated.  Interment will follow in St. Mary’s Cemetery.

There will be a luncheon following burial at St. Edward’s Parish Hall in Derby Line.

Should friends desire, contributions in her memory may be made to St. Mary’s Star of the Sea Catholic Church, 191 Clermont Terrace, Newport, Vermont 05855, or to St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church, 18 North Pleasant Street, North Troy, Vermont 05859.

Online condolences at



Claire E. (Gagne) Wheeler

Claire E. (Gagne) Wheeler died on Friday, September 21, 2018, in Westmore.

She was born June 26, 1942, in St. Johnsbury to Yvonne and Fred Gagne.  She was a graduate of St. Johnsbury Academy and Bryant College.

Mrs. Wheeler was a loving and devoted wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and friend to many.  Spending time with her family, grandchildren, and friends brought her the most joy, and these relationships were the center of her life.  She deeply valued her Christian faith and enjoyed being in her garden.

She leaves her husband of 55 years, Bruce, as well as their children and their spouses:  Jeff and Suzanne Wheeler, Mitch and Trish Wheeler, and Kate Wheeler and her husband, David Knowles.  She is also survived by her sisters:  Lorraine Holland, Susan Utton, Gloria Toney, and Nancy Gagne; her brother Richard Gagne; seven grandchildren; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

She was predeceased by her parents.

A Mass will be held at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Barton on Saturday, September 29, at 2 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Barton, or to the Friends of Norris Cotton Cancer Center at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Hanover, New Hampshire.


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