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Obituaries (08/21/08)

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Helga Neuse Whitcomb

SOUTH BURLINGTON — Helga Neuse Whitcomb, 74, of South Burlington died Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2008, in Respite House in Williston, as a result of brain cancer. Helga was born in Middlebury on July 22, 1934, the daughter of Werner and Eloise Neuse.

She attended Middlebury schools until 1949 when she spent three years at Northfield School for Girls in Northfield, Mass. She attended Middlebury College and earned a B.A. in 1956 with majors in German and French, while at the same time pursuing her love of skiing and serving on the Ski Patrol.

She spent one summer in France as a governess for two children, and several years later, another summer as a member of a German-speaking group of the Experiment in International Living in Feldbach, Austria. In the fall of 1956, she became a teaching assistant in the doctoral program in German at Stanford University.

She pursued her doctoral studies and taught several courses in the Stanford German teaching program. At the conclusion of the academic year, on June 22, 1957, she married Richard O. Whitcomb, an acting instructor, also at Stanford.

In Geneva, N.Y., she was a research technician in pomology at the Cornell University Field Station. After raising a family in Wisconsin, Washington and Illinois, she became head of the inter-library loan department at Illinois State University in 1980. She spent eleven years as research librarian at ISU and retired in 1991.

In 1996, she returned with her husband Richard to Vermont where she lived in South Burlington for the next twelve years. According to family, she was an expert knitter and seamstress, an ardent letter writer, a dedicated gardener, a gourmet cook and a gifted chronicler of family memoirs, letters and diaries.

She was a member of All Saints Episcopal Church in South Burlington, where she sang in the choir and contributed to the life of the church in many ways, including the holiday bazaar and the annual musical production.

On June 22, 2007, the couple celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, with a special dinner and gathering at Mary’s Place in Bristol, which reunited all of the surviving members of the original wedding party.

She is survived by her husband, Richard, of South Burlington; a daughter, Katharine Whitcomb, of Ellensburg, Wash.; a son, John Whitcomb and his wife, Alicia Aiken, of Evanston, Ill.; and two grandchildren; a brother, Karl Neuse and his wife, Diane, of Middlebury; two sisters, Ingrid Ambrus and her husband, Theodore, of Marina, Calif., and Margaret Neuse of Washington, D.C.; a sister-in-law, Susanne Hays and her husband, William, of Arlington, Mass.; and a stepmother, Erna Neuse of Bridgewater, N.J.

Visitation will be held at the Ready Funeral Home, 261 Shelburne Road in Burlington from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 22. A memorial service will take place at All Saints Episcopal Church, 1250 Spear St. in South Burlington on Saturday, Aug. 23, at 11 a.m.


Lola M. Lorent

EAST MIDDLEBURY — Lola M. Lorent, 79, of East Main Street, died Monday, Aug. 18, 2008, at Helen Porter Healthcare in Middlebury. She was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Feb. 24, 1929, the daughter of John D. and Lilly I. (Lloyd) Newhouse.

 She was a graduate of James Madison High School, Brooklyn, and was employed as a secretary prior to her marriage. She married Eugene J. Lorent June 16, 1951, at the Church of the Advent in Bloomfield, N.J. She was a longtime resident of Bloomfield prior to moving here in 1992.

 She was a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She enjoyed needlepoint, knitting, and reading.

 She is survived by her husband, Eugene J. Lorent of East Middlebury; one daughter, Claire A. Thomas and her husband, Mark W. Thomas, of East Middlebury; one son, Drew S. Lorent of Columbia, N.J.; and three grandsons.

 Calling hours will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 21, at Sanderson-Ducharme Funeral Home at 117 South Main St. in Middlebury. The funeral service will be conducted at 10 a.m. Friday at East Middlebury United Methodist Church, with the Rev. Jill Robinson, pastor, officiating. Burial will be on Saturday at Ballston Spa Cemetery in Ballston Spa, N.Y.

 Memorial donations may be made to Middlebury Volunteer Ambulance Association, P.O. Box 504, Middlebury, VT 05753.

 Online condolences may be made at sandersonfuneralservice@comcast.net.


Lt. Col. Robert A. Juneo

SALISBURY — Lt. Col. Robert A. Juneo, Ret. U.S. Air Force, 75, died suddenly Monday evening, Aug. 18, 2008, in his home at Lake Dunmore in Salisbury. He was born in Duluth, Minn., the son of Robert and Mildred Juneo.

He graduated from the University of Minnesota at Duluth in 1956, where he was commissioned as an officer in the Air Force-ROTC. He served at various duty stations around the United States and abroad.

When he was at the headquarters USair Force Wiesbaden, Germany, he met his future wife, who was a teacher for the Air Force dependents. They were married in Baldwin, L.I., N.Y., and from there went to Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo, Texas, where he served for the Air Force Security Service.

They were there for six years, and it was there that their daughter Jennifer Lynn was born. Their next assignment was to Karamursel, Turkey, where he was base comptroller and his wife resumed teaching for the Department of Defense. While serving in Turkey, he received his MBA from the University of Arkansas.

Upon arriving back in the U.S.A., he was assigned to Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland where he was at headquarters preparing the Air Force budget. He retired from the Air Force in 1978 after serving 22 years. He and his family lived in the D.C. area (Springfield, Va.) for 15 years where he had numerous jobs with federal contractors; most notably he worked for Ross Perot at EDS.

He and his wife moved to Lake Dunmore in 1989 to a property they acquired in 1985 (the site of the old Lake Dunmore Hotel, which became the “North 40”). Family reports that he often commented how much he loved this place — “just like paradise,” he’d say  — and he was so happy here.

In 1996, he and his wife vacationed to Venice, Fla., and before they returned to Vermont they bought a condo. From then on they spent six months in Vermont and six months in Florida — the best of both worlds.

While stationed in San Angelo, Texas, he was active with Kiwanis and became the “Kiwaniian of the Year” in 1971. He was a member of Neshobe Golf Club, Free and Accepted Masons, Gyros, The “Tuesday Lunch Bunch” at Middlebury golf course,  the TROA and Grace United Methodist Church in Venice, Fla.

According to family, he was known for his sense of humor, active wit, and storehouse of jokes and stories, and he was never at a loss for words.

He is survived by his wife, Shirley Whitney Juneo; a daughter, Jennifer Mullen and her husband, Mike, of Potomac Falls, Va.; a granddaughter; a sister, Nancy Lahti and her husband, Ken, of Duluth, Minn.; a sister-in-law; a brother-in-law; and numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews from various parts of the country.

A memorial service will be held at the Salisbury Congregational Church on Monday, Aug. 25, at 2 p.m. with a reception to follow. Burial will be at a later date in the West Salisbury Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be sent to Middlebury Hospice, the Air Force Memorial Association, or the Middlebury Volunteer Ambulance Association.


Percy Ray Dow

MIDDLEBURY — Percy Ray Dow, 88, a longtime resident, died Friday, Aug. 15, 2008, in Porter Medical Center. Born in Burlington, Nov. 22, 1919, he was the son of the late Horace and Bessy (Hunt) Dow.

He married Ruth Turner on May 22, 1949, in the Middlebury United Methodist Church. Percy helped his father run the family farm on Case Street in Middlebury following his graduation from Middlebury High School. When he gave up farming in the 1960s, he worked until retirement in the maintenance department at Porter Hospital.

He and his wife, Ruth, also owned a maple sugar house, where folks would look forward to “sugaring-off parties” that Ruth and Percy would host.

Family members include one son, Stephen Dow and his wife, Beth, of Middlebury; one daughter, Mary Dow and her partner, Gina Cooper, of Phoenix, Ariz.; a daughter-in-law, Judy Dow of Middlebury; four grandchildren, Paul Dow and Jonathan Dow of Middlebury, Julie Allen and her husband, Tim, of Ripton, and Sarah Provoncha and her husband, Jared, of Middlebury; one great-granddaughter, Molly Allen; two sister-in-laws, Betty Laframboise and her husband, Raymond, of Middlebury and Joyce Sargent of Middlebury; one brother-in-law, Richard Turner of Poultney; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.

 In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his wife, Ruth, in 2007; and a son, James H. Dow; a daughter, Cynthia Anne Dow; and sisters, Phyllis Dow Witt and Juanita Dow Spencer.

A memorial service will be conducted at 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 25, in Middlebury United Methodist Church with the Rev. Jill Robinson, pastor, officiating.

 Burial will follow the ceremony at the Case Street Cemetery, Middlebury. A reception will follow in the fellowship hall, hosted by the UMW group.

The family suggests that memorial donations be made to the American Diabetes Association of Vermont, 77 Hegeman Ave., Colchester, VT 05446.

Arrangements are under the direction of Sanderson Funeral Service, 117 S. Main St., Middlebury. Online condolences may be made at www.sandersonfuneralservice.com.


Jane L. Devost

STARKSBORO — Jane L. Devost, 64, of Starksboro died unexpectedly Saturday, Aug. 16, 2008 in the Rutland Regional Medical Center following respiratory failure. She was born in Norton on April 1, 1944, the daughter of Harvey and Mary (Coulombe) Devost.

She graduated from Rice Memorial High School, class of 1960, and from Ellie’s Beauty Academy. She was an instructor at Vermont College of Cosmetology for over 30 years.

In recent years, she provided care for the disabled and elderly. According to family, she took every opportunity to make a positive difference in other peoples lives.

She is survived by her father, Harvey, of South Burlington; a brother, Donald, of Caracas, Venezuela; three sisters, Mabel Many of Lyman, Maine, Carol Hennessy of Marion, Iowa, and Linda Wiest of Shaker Heights, Ohio; and many nieces and nephews, and great-nieces and great-nephews.

She was predeceased by her mother, Mary, on Feb. 23, 2008, and by an infant sister, Martha.

A memorial service was held Aug. 18 at Allenwood, 90 Allen Road, South Burlington. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Wednesday, Aug. 20, in St. Bernard’s Roman Catholic Church in Norton.

To send online condolences, please visit www.readyfuneral.com.


Shirlee Ann Arnold

WHITING — Shirlee Ann Arnold, 82, died Friday, Aug. 15, 2008, at her home in Whiting after brief illness. She was born April 19, 1926, in Walla-Walla, Wash., the daughter of the late Harry and Laura (Atkins) Winget.

She was a graduate of Whitman College, class of 1951.

Shirlee was a member of the Vermont House of Representatives, serving from Addison County from 1983 –1987, in which she was very active in the Patients Right’s Bill passing. She was a member of the Society of Friends.

She is survived by her daughter, Charlotte Rooney and her husband, Stephen, of East Berne, N.Y.; her two granddaughters, Hilary and Molly Rooney, of East Berne, N.Y.; her sister, Priscilla Dauble, of Walla-Walla, Wash.; and by several nieces and nephews.

Shirlee was predeceased by her husband, Maurice D. Arnold, in 1983; also by her second husband, John Irwin, who she married in 1994, who predeceased her in 2000; by her daughter, Laurilee Arnold, in 1972; by her sister, Margaret Safranek; and her brother, Charles Winget.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, Aug. 23, 2008, at 11 a.m. at the Sudbury Congregational Church; the Rev. Meredith Anderson will officiate.

Burial will follow in the Whiting Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Addison County Home Health and Hospice at P.O. Box 754, Middlebury, VT 05753

Arrangements have been entrusted to the Sanderson-Ducharme Funeral Home, 117 South Main St., Middlebury, VT 05753.

Online condolences may be made at www.sandersonfuneralservice.com.

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