For our brother and our family, our community has been a true blessing
Seth and Carter Christmas

For our brother and our family, our community has been a true blessing

BRATTLEBORO — Growing up in a small community like Brattleboro means you get to know many people, whether they be acquaintances or good friends. It is hard to go anywhere without recognizing someone. This can at times can seem like a curse, but at other times be a blessing.

In our family's case, it was a true blessing.

In March, our brother, Seth Christmas, was diagnosed with stage 4 esophageal cancer, and he died Sept. 14. The news was devastating, but the immediate support from the community helped him to fight this terrible disease with everything he had.

Family and friends wanted to help in any way they could. This included establishing a GoFundMe account to help support Seth and his son, Carter, financially while he was unable to work. It was a huge comfort to Seth to not have to worry about how to pay his bills.

Initially, Seth had wanted to personally write thank-you notes to all who contributed, but in a very short time the number became overwhelming. He was so deeply touched by how many people were supporting him. It definitely helped him to keep a positive attitude while he received his treatments.

The biggest supporter in Seth's corner since the day they met has been Mary Giamartino, proprietor of the Hotel Pharmacy. She provided all of his home-care supplies, pharmacy deliveries, and constant emotional support. She took him under her wing from day one and always treated him like one of her own. We will forever be indebted.

To the St. Michael's community, St. Brigid's Kitchen, and Father Justin Baker, thank you. Your spiritual guidance and prayers have helped to ease the pain over the last few months, especially for our father.

To the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks #1499 and its members, thank you. Your generation donations and Elks reception allowed us to celebrate and grieve the life of Seth together as a family.

Thank you to Brattleboro Savings & Loan and everyone who has generously donated to Carter's college education. Seth's mini has a bright future, and every penny donated will help him reach his full potential.

Seth left behind a beautiful, smart, talented, and sensitive little boy. It's amazing to watch him grow each day and carry on such similar traits of his father, from his use of his left hand to his smile and to his almost-bow-legged run. He is by far the best gift Seth left behind for us.

Carter was walking with his cousin at a Friday night Colonels football game when he stopped in his tracks and looked up at the sky. He then pointed up and said, “Look, there is my dad!”

His cousin asked him where, and Carter replied, “The brightest star in the sky - it means my dad is watching me.”

This sweet little boy who is just like his dad gets us through the day. The saying “it takes a village to raise a child” is spot on for Carter. We hope to shower him with emotional support and stories to remind him of how much he is and was loved by his dad.

Living in a small, tight-knit community has reminded us of how lucky we all are. Always kiss and hug the ones you love! Life is definitely short but sweet.

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