College news

• Charles Greene-Cramer of Marlboro was one of 200 Western Connecticut State University students who volunteered for a Day of Service to assist Danbury residents last month.


• Brattleboro Memorial Hospital has hired Fred Landes, MD to its medical staff. He will provide care for patients in the BMH Center for Wound Healing and the hospital's Emergency Department. Landes joins BMH after serving as medical director for the North Adams Regional Hospital Wound Center since its opening in 2011. He was also an attending physician in Emergency Medicine at North Adams Regional Hospital for the past 15 years.

• Sally E. Fegley is the new Patient Experience Manager in the BMH Quality Department. In this position, Fegley will work closely with the hospital's Chief Medical Officer Dr. Kathleen McGraw, as well as with the quality director and department managers, to work with the patient call-back process; to further develop skills of staff regarding customer service; to serve as point of contact for patient complaints; and to assist in the education of the hospital community regarding patient satisfaction scores.


• Mary E. Brackett, 99, of Vernon. Died Oct. 2 at Vernon Green Nursing Home. Wife of the late Edward C. Brackett for 51 years. Mother of Karen Malmgren of Old Orchard Beach, Maine, and the late Eric Brackett. Sister of the late Norma Stebbins and Ruth Gass. Born in Brattleboro, the daughter of the Emile and Jennie (Nolan) Filion. She was raised and educated in Brattleboro and was a graduate of Brattleboro High School, Class of 1932. She worked in the offices at the former Dunham Shoe Company and retired from Dunham's after many faithful years of service with the company. Previously, she had been a sales associate at the former J.E. Mann Store on Main Street and, following her retirement from Dunham's. she returned to Mann's, working on a part-time basis. She was a communicant of St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church in Brattleboro. She loved the outdoors and enjoyed downhill and cross country skiing, hunting, fishing and time shared with her family. Memorial information: Graveside committal services were held Oct. 8 in Meetinghouse Hill Cemetery, where she was laid to rest next to her husband. Donations to the Vernon Green Activities Fund, 61 Greenway Drive, Vernon, VT05354. Arrangements are under the direction of the Atamaniuk Funeral Home.

• David Ell Gibbs, 87, of Brattleboro. Died Sept. 30 at Thompson House, where he had been a resident for the past nine years. Husband of the late Gertrude Alice Gainley Gibbs. Father of Beverly Gibbs Randall and her husband, Wayne, of Brattleboro. Brother of Lois Mitchell of Largo, Fla. Predeceased by 13 brothers and sisters: Eva, John, Orson, Bernarr, William, Charlotte, Myrtle, Mary, Flossie, James, Norman, Charles, and Lynn. Born in Stowe, the son of the late John Charles Gibbs and Lottie Pearl Barrett. He served in the Army from 1946-1949, and was a truck driver for many years, retiring from Scott & Daniels in Portland, Conn. At Thompson House, he was active in the resident council and was one of the original participants of the “Dreams Happen” campaign. One of David's favorite pastimes was playing his fiddle with many different bands and his family. One of his most requested songs was the “Orange Blossom Special.” Memorial information: Funeral services were held Oct. 9 at the Community Bible Chapel in Brattleboro.

• Margaret (Blake) Little, 64, of El-Cajun, Calif., formerly of Charlestown, N.H. Died Sept, 22 at her home following an 18-year long battle with cancer. Wife of Les Little for 23 years. Sister of Paul Blake of Canaan, N.H., and Katherine “Kitty” Foster and her husband, John, of North Walpole, N.H. Stepdaughter of Velma Blake of Seal Beach, Fla. Born in Bellows Falls, the daughter of Paul and Barbara (Mills) Blake, she attended school in Westminster. After moving with her family to Charlestown, she attended and graduated from Fall Mountain High School in 1968. As a child, she spent many summers with her grandparents Arthur and Margaret Mills. After graduation, she moved to California, where she worked as an executive secretary and met the man who became her beloved husband. Memorial information: At her request, she was cremated and her ashes spread over her favorite beach in California.

• Thomas R. Mansfield, 89, of Putney. Died Oct. 5 at his home. Husband of Sumiko. Father of Sarah, Elizabeth and Tony. An educator, farmer, vintner, and musician, he lived life to the fullest. He was born in Lewiston, Maine. After serving as a Naval aviator, he graduated from Bates College in Maine in 1950. In 1952, he became director of education for the Boys Club of New York. Thereafter, he became a teacher at St. Bernard's School in New York City. From 1965 to 1978, he served as the first headmaster of the Day School (now known as the Trevor Day School). Over those 13 years, he and the faculty built a school that challenged the norms of childhood education, that placed learning before teaching, and that became an inspiration to countless students, teachers and parents. In 1958, while still living in New York City, the Mansfields purchased Wyngate Farm in Putney. Originally a weekend home, the farm was soon integrated into the Day School curriculum, serving as a center for outdoor education. Every year, Day School students would spend one week in Putney with their class hiking, milking cows, sugaring, navigating the ropes course, and generally experiencing life away from home. In 1979, the Mansfields moved to Putney full time to run the outdoor education program for the Day School. He also farmed, made wine, skied, golfed and continued to challenge former faculty and friends from afar. He embraced his life in Putney as he embraced every other challenge in his life: with vigor, gusto, and enthusiasm. He leaves an indelible imprint on the Day School, on the Farm and on his family. Memorial information: The family will hold a memorial service later this year in the Putney area. The Trevor Day School has posted a tribute to Tom, including reflections from students, faculty and friends, on its website at

• Chance Schenetzke, 30, of Wilmington. Died Sept. 27 at his home. Father of Kaydence Marie Schenetzke of Keene, N.H. Brother of Breann Campbell of Huntingburg, Ind., Schauna Uebelhor of Jasper, Ind., and Joe Schenetzke of Mertztown, Pa. Born in Connersville, Ind., the son of Lorraine and the late R. Gregory Schenetzke, he was an avid outdoorsman with a love of animals. He attended Whitingham High School. He joined the Army in 2002 and served in Afghanistan, where he was a specialist in unit 2-22 Charlie Company. He later joined the Vermont Army National Guard, and was a member of Delta Company, 3/172 Regiment, 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Mountain) in Westminster. Memorial information: No service information available.

• Richard Merrill Sweitzer, 89, of Putney. Died Sept. 26, one week short of his 90th birthday. Husband of Barbara App Kahle for 58 years. Father of Frank James II and Richard Merrill Jr. Stepfather of Paul Stanley, Mark Allen and the late Molly Ann. Sister of Dorothy Meehan. Born in Mill Hall, Pa., the son of the late Agnes Edith and Frank James Sweitzer, at a young age his talents as a designer were evident in his drawing of cars and airplanes, as well as doll clothing for his sister. This is when he discovered his love of music and learned to play the piano. Following high school, Dick worked at Piper Aircraft, where he learned to fly the Piper Cub. In April 1944, Dick enlisted in the Navy and served as a medic aboard the hospital ship USS Tranquility until his honorable discharge in 1946. He studied architecture at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he joined the Theta Xi fraternity and remained an active member throughout his life. He joined Army ROTC to help pay for college and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Army Reserve, and earned his architectural degree in 1951. He took his first position as an architectural draftsman with Raymond Viner Hall in Port Allegheny, Pa., in 1952. During his tenure with Ray Hall, (whose father Walter was a builder involved in the construction of Falling Water), he was influenced by the designs of Frank Lloyd Wright. It was in Port Allegheny that he met his future wife. The family moved to Towanda, Pa., where he opened the private practice of Richard Merrill Sweitzer, Architect, AIA. Once the nest was empty, he closed his private practice and he and his wife moved to Andover, Mass., in 1979. There he worked in his field for GTE, Bank of Boston, and then GHK, until his retirement. As a very gregarious man, he was always curious about others, quite comfortable in any social situation, and had a generous and open heart. The Sweitzers enjoyed a rich social life with their strong community of friends. He was an active member of the Towanda First Presbyterian church, where he sang in the choir, and later in the Christ Church in Andover, Mass., where he was a deacon. he continued playing piano late in life. He was a jazz devotee and enjoyed golfing, skiing, and traveling. Memorial information: A memorial service will be held in Amherst, Mass., at a later date.

• Norma Jean Winchester, 58, of Guilford. Died Oct. 3 at her home. Wife of Ralph Winchester. Mother of Rachel Baxter Gustavis and her husband, Peter, of Guilford and the late Ed Baxter. Stepmother of Nathan Winchester of Guilford, as well as Ralph's children, Ray, Roger and Jessica Winchester. Sister of Larry Brewer and his wife, Donna, of Readsboro; Willis Brewer and his wife, Pat, of Marlboro; Judy Roy and her husband, Roy, of Halifax; and the late Leonard Brewer. Born in Bennington, the daughter of Willis and the late Mildred (Phelps) Brewer, she was a lifelong Guilford resident. She was employed as a manufacturing manager for Omega Optical. She enjoyed boating, water skiing, bonfires, cookouts with family and friends, reading, and traveling with her husband. Memorial information: A funeral service was held Oct. 8 at Ker-Westerlund Funeral Home in Brattleboro, with burial in Maplehurst Cemetery in Guilford. Donations may be made to VNA/Hospice, 66 Benning St. #6, West Lebanon, NH 03784.

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