Passed on: November 30, 2018
Harold "Hel" Ehrenfreund died on November 30 at the age of 91. He lived in Bennington for forty-seven years. He was a member of the Bennington Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow. He was on the board of the Old First Church where he led the capital campaign for the church's restoration in the 90's. He was the founder of the Owlkill Farm where he raised eggs that the sold to many local supermarkets. He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Betsy.
Passed on: January 7, 2017
James V. Horrigan, a resident of Woodford died unexpectedly at his residence on January 7, 2017 at age 72. He began his career at the Catamount Bank in Bennington. He was a member of the Bennington Rotary Club. He was on the Board of the Sacred Heart School and served as a Bennington Town Selector from 1980 to 1982, He retired in 2008 and was the Treasurer for the Woodford Lake Association during his retirement.
Passed on: September 7, 2015
John Page joined Rotary for the first time in 1952. He served his community in many ways throughout his life time. He was Bennington County's University of Vermont's agricultural extension agent for thirty-four years.
As a member of the Bennington Rotary Club he assisted in planting trees on Main Street and raising funds for the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center. He and his family hosted many exchange students.
He was a state representative and a state senator, often working across the aisle to get things accomplished. He served on the State Environmental Board and the Regional Planning Commission. He organized the Bennington Bee Keepers Club among other things when he was the county extension agent.
His other community activities included serving on the board of the Second Congregational Church and as a justice of the peace. He was the president of the board of Merck Forest, He also taught a local gardening course taken over the years by 2000 people.
John had a radio program on WBTN for thirty years. Who can forget what he admonished his listeners at the end of every program? "Don't forget to drink your milk today."
Passed on: May 15, 2015
Gene Clark was a long-time member of Rotary. He was president from 1956 to 1957. Gene also served as President of the Bennington County Bar association and a member of the Vermont Board of Bar Examiners. He practice law until he was 80.
He was a municipal court judge from 1959-62, Bennington County State Senator from 1952-64 and a member of the House of Representatives in 1968.He served on many town boards including the hospital and the Bennington Savings and Loan.
Passed on: April 13, 2015
Robert J.M. "Bob" Matteson died on Monday at his home in Bennington at age 98, according to a funeral notice in today's Banner.
Matteson, a Bennington native, served on many state and local boards, including as town moderator, town manager for Bennington from 1977 to 1981 and planning director for Vermont from 1981 to 1984. He drafted town charters for both Bennington and North Bennington and served as director of Bennington Tomorrow, a non-profit organization which formed to enhance the town's cultural and artistic environment and quality of life through a strong economy. He also served on many urban and rural planning commissions beyond the borders of Vermont.
In his later years, Matteson's passion for running earned him many awards in the most senior division. In fact, he was widely known as the "Geezer Gazelle" and traveled around the world to compete.
Matteson was born in Bennington in 1916, and he graduated from Middlebury College, then earned his Ph.D. Degree in economics and government from Harvard. He later served as an officer in the Navy during World War II.
Matteson was long a familiar face in town. His antiques business on South Street and his myriad of public offices have kept him in the limelight for many of his 98 years. Up until the last couple years, he frequently submitted letters to the editor of the Banner.
He was president of the Vermont Antiques Dealers Association, a long-time member of the Bennington Rotary Club, as well as involved with the New England Tropical Conservatory, Oldcastle Theater Company, the Bennington Museum, the Bennington Historical Society, UCS, and a variety of other organizations.
He was a high-ranking Masters Runner with several world records in the over 90 division. The local Batten Kill Valley Runners group named an award after Matteson, which goes to an athlete at Mount Anthony Union High School who shows Matteson's best characteristics: tenacity, dedication, determination, goal orientation, and above all, maintaining a sense of humor in the face of defeat. These attributes earned Matteson an appointment to the Governor's Commission on Healthy Aging.
In 2009 the Vermont House of Representatives recognized both Matteson's civic and athletic achievements in a resolution honoring him. "Bob Matteson's truly remarkable athletic feats should be celebrated as an example of human determination, endurance, and extraordinary skill," it stated in part.
Passed on: November 2, 2014
Ron Knapp was a Rotarian for 49 years. He was also a Paul Harris Fellow. Ron was also a life-long Mason. He served his community in many ways. For ten years he was a member of the Bennington School Board and he represented Bennington for another ten years in the Vermont Legislautre.
Ron also exemplifed Service above Self in his business Knapp's Pets and Hobbies which he ran for thirty years. For the last ten years he ran his beloved Irish Vacation House. He and his wife Ellen really enjoyed it and he made it seem most inviting.
Ron had a great sense of humor and he once suggested one of the best money raising fines the Bennington Rotary club ever had. Anyone who didn't have a real handkerchief had to pay the fine.
Ron will be much missed by his friends and his family as well as the Bennington community.
Passed on: November 2, 2012
Samuel Newcomb Hibbard of 1455 Maple Grove Road, Pownal, Vt., died of leukemia at Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona on Friday, November 2, 2012 at the age of 80. Samuel Newcomb Hibbard of 1455 Maple Grove Road, Pownal, Vt., died of leukemia at Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona on Friday, November 2, 2012 at the age of 80.
Born in North Adams, on October 1, 1932, he was the son of Perley Nudd and Grace Bargh Hibbard. He attended local Bennington schools, graduating from Bennington High as president of the class of 1950. He received a BA in Economics from Bowdoin College in 1954, where he was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity. Sam earned an ROTC commission as a second lieutenant in the army transportation corps. His military assignment was twenty months in the USA Southern German headquarters in Munich, Germany.
Sam attended Wharton Graduate School at the University of Pennsylvania, receiving an MBA degree in Industrial Management in 1958. There followed a thirty-year career at Norton Company (now St. Gobain) in Worcester, Mass. He held a variety of positions: industrial engineer, pension analyst, staff accountant, purchasing agent and director of compensation and benefits.
A major interest was health care insurance cost containment. In this regard, Sam was a founder and member of the Central Massachusetts Business Group on Health and a founder and member of the Worcester Area Systems for Affordable Health Care.
In Holden, Mass., Sam was a five-year member and chair of the Holden School Committee. After retiring to the family farm in Vermont, he was a Pownal selectman for three years, a director of United Way of Bennington County for six years and a trustee of the Bennington Museum for nine years. A lifelong Rotarian, he was a Paul Harris Fellow.
Most recently he has been a voting member of the American Institute for Economic Research in Great Barrington.
Sam leaves his wife of fifty years, Marietta Laskey Hibbard, two daughters, Wendy Lee Hibbard of Canton, Conn., and Melinda Newcomb Kruder of Carol Stream, IL, as well as a brother, Albert Dudley Hibbard of Prudence Island, RI.
Passed on: May 15, 2012
Manfred W. Ehrich Jr. died May 15, 2012, at Equinox Village where he and his late wife, Elane, were residents since 2009. Fred was born in NYC on November 2, 1914.
Educated at Dalton, Taft and Yale and earning a degree at Harvard Law School in 1940, Fred practiced for a year in his father's law firm in NYC before going on active duty in 1941 as an artillery officer in the U.S. Army. In August 1942, he was posted to the Aleutian Islands, came home in May 1944 for a short leave and then was posted to Italy until his discharge in 1945.
While Fred was on active duty, he and his first wife, Lea Ehrich, decided she would move with their three children to Arlington, Vermont. Fred joined his family in Arlington after the war but since he was not a "native," Vermont required two years' residency before he could be admitted to practice law. Surveying many parcels of land in Bennington County and teaching English at Burr & Burton kept food on the table. Former students still fondly remember the war stories he told in class which he said was one way to get them interested in English. In 1947, he hung out his shingle in Bennington where he practiced law for 49 years. In 1956, he argued a case for a wrongfully terminated employee before the United States Supreme Court. During oral argument, Justice Frankfurter asked him a question. Stalling to collect his thoughts, he said "You know, your honor, that's a difficult question." Justice Frankfurter replied, "You wouldn't want me to ask you an easy one, would you?" Fred won the case.
Fred did not resign his commission after WWII and continued in the Reserves. In 1951, he was called back to active duty and served in Korea until he was wounded in action. After that, he completed 30 years as a Reserve Officer, retiring as a Lt. Colonel.
Fred was deeply involved with local politics (Republican brand), in numerous community services in Bennington County and with his neighbors, helping chop wood and other chores. He wrote an anecdotal book (proceeds to benefit the Arlington Community Club) about his early years as a "flatlander" making friends with Vermonters. In addition to all his civic activities, he always found time for his young family, taking the kids hiking, horseback riding and teaching them how to sail on Lake Champlain in canoes which he had himself outfitted with striped canvas sails made from old awnings.
In 1971, Fred and Lea divorced and he married Elane Granger. He and Elane lived in Bennington until 2009 when they moved to Equinox Village in Manchester.
When Fred retired from his law practice at the age of 80 ("Don't tell anyone but my secretary is retiring."), he donned his trademark red suspenders and was elected to the Vermont State Senate where he served two terms. Afterwards, even though not running for office, he wore red suspenders which shone a light on his playful side and the keen and charming wit enjoyed by him, his family and his friends. His list of talents were endless: he skied; he sailed; he rode horseback; he fashioned furniture with hand tools; he sang in the church choir. He will be deeply missed but forever appreciated by his family, his friends and the community.
Fred is survived by his children, Perez Ehrich and his wife Elizabeth of Arlington, Vermont, Jessie Lea Abbott and her husband Curtiss of Sisters, Oregon, Andy Livingston and his partner Donna Ryan of Cape Neddick, Maine, and Raymond Granger and his wife Sylvia of Scottsdale, Arizona; by his grandchildren, Gillian Ehrich, Shannon Ehrich-Warren, Clay Perkins, Zander Livingston, Birchard, Rutherford and Sarah Hayes, Jeannette, Luisa and Sarah Ehrich, Ursula van Heel, John Karhu, Travis Granger and Karen Williams; and by his great-grandchildren, Manfred "Bucky" and Gunther Hayes, Cameron Sloan, Lucy and Zinia Sheps, Hadley and Merritt Perkins, Carmella and Joseph Livingston, Owen Williams, Jonathan and Anna Karhu, and Eric and Christopher van Heel. Fred's oldest son, Manfred W. "Terry" Ehrich III, predeceased him in 2002 and Elane predeceased him in 2010. His children, Perez and Jessie, are twins and he had a twin sister, Dona, who predeceased him in 2000.
Passed on: August 11, 2011
Timothy D. Lefevre 35 of Stamford, Vt. died Thursday August 11, 2011 at his home. He was born in Ware, Ma. on November 7, 1975 a son of Ralph and Elizabeth Waugh Lefevre. He graduated from Quaboag Regional High School where he played on the basketball and soccer teams. He attended the University of Massachusetts and graduated from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts with a degree in business and accounting.
He was employed at the time of his death as a certified public account for Love Cody and Company a accounting firm in Bennington, Vt. He was an avid reader and Red Sox fan. He enjoyed sports and was a devoted father.
Survivors include his father: Ralph Lefevre and his wife Sandra of North Brookfield, Mass. and his mother: Elizabeth Lefevre of Coventry, Vt. His wife Danielle Smith whom he married September 28, 2008 at their home. One Son: Gavin Lefevre of Stamford, Vt. One Sister: Michelle Turnbull. Five brothers: Steven Lefevre, Jason Lefevre, Thomas Cummings, Todd Cummings and Craig Nicholas. Several nieces, nephews and friends.
Passed on: May 16, 2011
Dr. Oakley M. Frost, retired surgeon and former longtime resident of North Bennington died unexpectedly Monday May 16, 2011 at his home in Hoosick Falls, N.Y., he was 79 years of age. Born in Middletown Springs on February 23, 1932, he was the son of Oakley T. and Lillian (Gentles) Frost, he received his early education at the Whitney School in Old Bennington and was a graduate of Plattsburgh (NY) High School. He continued his education at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass., where he received his under graduate degree and then Albany Medical School where he obtained his Doctorate in Medicine Degree. He pursued specialized training in Vascular and General Surgery at Albany Medical Center and the Veterans Administration Hospital in Albany where he served his internship.
A resident of the Bennington area since 1965, he was a Vascular and General Surgeon at the Southwestern Vermont Medical until retiring in 2005. Dr. Frost was a Korean War Veteran serving in the US Navy aboard the USS Boston. He was a member of the Zion Episcopal Church in Manchester Center, Mt. Anthony Lodge Free and Accepted Masons, Bennington Rotary Club, Sage City Symphony, Union College Symphony and a board member of the new England Tropical Conservatory. He thoroughly enjoyed music and was a member of the Sage City 6 Dixieland Band, Frosty 4 Barbershop Quartet with his sons and has sung with the Mendelssohn Club of Albany. He also enjoyed gardening, maintaining a large garden for many years at his home and was known for growing beautiful dahlias, he loved his 59 Corvette which he has owned since being a young man.
He leaves his wife Carol (Comar) Frost whom he married November 3, 1996 in Bennington, his former wife Dorothy Frost of North Bennington and their children daughter and son in laws Elizabeth Anne and Jeffrey Silva and children Conner and Rowan of Ipswich, Mass., Kristina Kim and Jeffrey Moll and children Remy and Sami of Middleton, Mass., Laura Maria and Eric Van Denbrulle and daughter Eve of New York City, son and daughter in laws John David Frost of Burlington, Robert and Julie Frost and children Olivia, Hannah and Addison of Monroe, Conn., Matthew Joseph and Susie Frost and daughter Kyana of North Bennington, Jonathan Jay Frost of West Palm Beach, Fla., Eric Scott and Nancy Frost MD FACS and children Erica and Adam of Bennington, Randall Oakley Frost of North Bennington, Gary D. and Laurie Frost and children Alicia, Alexis, Rachel and Kristina of Stuart, Fla., step daughter Angela Pugliese of Bennington, sisters Margery Sherman and son Andrew of Sidney, Australia and Cynthia and Timothy Moran and children John and Tim of Glenrock, Pa.
Dr. Frost was predeceased by a sister Betty Ann Frost.
Passed on: November 17, 2008
Eunice was a dedicated member of Rotary and a dedicated member of the Bennington Community, demonstrating Service Above Self and the principles of the Four Way Test in all of her actions in Rotary and in the community. She worked tirelessly on all of the club's projects and was always available when needed. She is much missed.
Club President: 1998-1999
Started Spirit of Sharing 1983, Chair until 2008
Chair, Car Show Admissions Chair, Spaghetti Supper Admissions Numerous other projects and committees.