• Robert Edward Baybrook, 79, formerly of Brattleboro. Died peacefully on Aug. 15, 2023 in Florida, where he moved 23 years ago to pursue his love of fishing. He was born Norman Edward Stewart on Jan. 28, 1944 in Burlington, the son of Helen Stewart Gilbert and Harold Rawson. He spent his childhood in Brattleboro, and graduated from Brattleboro Union High School with the Class of 1962. He was predeceased by his birth mother and his adoptive parents, Richard and Irene Baybrook. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Stephanie Baybrook, of New Port Richey, Florida; their two daughters, Jennifer Baybrook of Florida and Jaclyn Watson of Vermont; his three children from a previous marriage, James Lee of New Hampshire, Robert Lee of Vermont, and Carlena Hall of Maine; and his half-sister Patricia Gilbert of Brattleboro. Memorial information: His ashes will be spread in the Gulf of Mexico, where he spent much of his time fishing.

• Michael L. Cassidy, 72, died peacefully on Oct. 19, 2023 at the White River Junction VA Hospital while surrounded by loved ones. He was born July 7, 1951 in Springfield, Massachusetts to the late John and Barbara Cassidy (Hansen). He attended Springfield High School, then proudly served his country by joining the Navy. He received several medals and honors during his time served. Michael worked as a machinist for several years before retiring and then served countless years as a volunteer at the Brattleboro Memorial Hospital. Michael was incredibly proud of the work he did and his community involvement, but nothing made him prouder than being a husband and father. While these duties were complicated by demons he gained while serving our country, Michael never wavered from expressing the love he had for his family. Michael tried to live life through the simple pleasures, visiting with friends, fishing, and spending time with family as much as he could. He is survived by his wife and best friend of 25 years, Michele Parent Cassidy; children Christine, Cori, Cheryl, Cassidy (Sean), and Sherie; stepchildren Cory and Renee; siblings Steven (Victoria), Laurie (Raymond), Thomas, and Virginia (John); and several grandchildren and other family members he held close to his heart. Memorial information: A memorial service will be held Nov. 15, at 3 p.m., at the Massachusetts State Veterans Cemetery in Agawam. In honor of Michael's final wishes, he left this message: "I want for my brother Steven to know that I forgive him." To view an online tribute, leave a message of condolence, or for information, visit

• Jill Margaret Deaett, 69, of Hinsdale, New Hampshire. Died Nov. 3, 2023 at Cheshire Medical Center in Keene, New Hampshire. Jill was born in Wantagh, New York on July 18, 1954, the daughter of Edward Washington and Gloria Cecelia (Crokus) Spanko. She grew up in Wantagh, on the south shore of Long Island, where, under her grandfather's tutoring, she became an expert fisherman and ocean swimmer. Her childhood summers were spent happily on the water with her extended family, including aunts, uncles, and cousins. Her affection for animals led her to take horseback riding lessons and she seemed to always have at least one pet close by wherever she lived. During her high school years at Holy Trinity High School (on Long Island), she became known locally for her lovely singing voice as a soloist in the folk choir at St. James Roman Catholic Church. Post high school, Jill pursued a degree in animal husbandry at State University of New York at Cobleskill. Post college, she returned to Long Island where she worked as an aide in a nursing home. A country girl at heart, she moved to Vermont to join her parents in Brattleboro. In Vermont, she put her cooking skills to good use, working as the cook at St. Michael's Catholic Church rectory for 12 years and singing in their church choir. She also put her training and natural empathy to work at Vernon Green where she was an LPN for several years. After marrying Francis Deaett, the couple moved to Hinsdale where, over the years, she became known to the local animal population of squirrels, chipmunks, birds, and rabbits who inhabited her garden and yard, where she spent happy hours feeding and watching out for her "critters." She also did beautiful embroidery work, much of which became prized possessions of family members who so looked forward to receiving her delicate pieces. Jill was known to those who loved her as fearless, strong, smart, and sometimes stubborn yet extraordinarily kind, with a great quirky sense of humor. She was unfailingly generous with the ones she loved and devoted to them to the end. Jill is survived by her loving husband of 34 years, Francis Deaett. Memorial information: Graveside services will be conducted Saturday, Nov. 18, at 11 a.m., in Oaklawn Cemetery in North Hinsdale. Donations to the Windham County Humane Society, P.O. Box 397, Brattleboro, VT 05302. To share a memory or offer condolences to Jill's family, visit

• Howard Alfred "Butchie" Deitz Sr., 85, of Westminster West. Died at home, with his loving family by his side, on Oct. 27, 2023. He was born on October 10, 1938, in Newtown, Connecticut, to the late Mary (Towler) and Howard Walter Deitz. Butchie had a fulfilling career as a diesel mechanic working for Metro Hoist in Connecticut. After moving to Vermont, he worked as a tractor mechanic at Furgat Tractor in Brattleboro. He then continued his mechanic career working for Burtco in Westminster and did truck driving for them as well. His dedication and expertise in these fields made him highly respected among his colleagues. Family was very important to him and he enjoyed his time spent at all the family gatherings. He also enjoyed working with his tractors and excavation equipment and loved a challenge, especially digging out stumps with his backhoe. Butchie is survived by his beloved wife, Veronica (Dubyoski) Deitz, to whom he was married for 65 loving years; their sons, Howard Deitz Jr., Daniel Deitz, Thomas Deitz (Teresa), David Deitz (Audrey); their daughters, Vicki Goulas (Steve), Teresa Sylvester (Michael), Joanne Deitz, Jennifer Lonard (Michael), and Kathleen Allen (Alexander); 15 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren; and several nieces, nephews, and cousins, as well as brothers Wayne Deitz (Beth), Charles Deitz, and Billy Deitz (Terri), and a sister, Eleanore Fossaluzza (Philip).​ He was preceded in death by his son, Matthew Deitz, and his siblings, JD "John" Deitz, who is survived by his wife, Rose; and Jeanne Accettullo Soares and Doris Wirtemburg. Memorial information: A graveside service was held Nov. 4 at Westminster New Cemetery.

• Paul Tyter Kane, 69, died on Oct. 21, 2023. He passed peacefully while being comforted by his daughter Jaime Kamel and son Rodney Stowell. Paul was born in Bellows Falls on Nov. 8, 1952 to Hilda (Wright) and Harold Edward (Darb) Kane. Paul was raised in Bellows Falls for the first 11 years of his life before the family moved to Palatka, Florida, where they resided until 1967. Again, for Harold's career, Paul and his family moved to Cumberland, Rhode Island. After high school, Paul continued his studies in psychology and sociology at Northeastern University and New England College, with two semesters in Arundel in Sussex, England. Upon returning to the U.S. and graduating, Paul began his career in social services in South Carolina with the Department of Youth Services. In 1978, Paul returned to graduate school and studied at New York University in their School of Social Work. Paul continued studying at Georgia State University in the counseling program. He continued to work in social work/counseling/corrections and started a business, P.K.'s Public House, in Bellows Falls in 1988. He married Marie (Madore) Stowell, who predeceased him. He is survived by his daughter, Jaime, her husband Jim Kamel, and their children Peter, Laura, Sam, and Jake; his son, Rodney Stowell, his wife Dawn, and their children Noah, Zander, Eric, and Kaley; and a nephew, Martin Bartlett. Memorial information: Visiting hours will take place on Friday, Nov. 24, from 4 to 6 p.m., at Fenton & Hennessey Funeral Home, 55 Westminster St., Bellows Falls. A funeral Mass will take place on Saturday, Nov. 25, at 10 a.m., at St. Charles Church in Bellows Falls, with burial will follow at Oak Hill Cemetery.

• Robert James "Bob" Kenney, 88, of Vernon. Died Nov. 4, 2023 in the comfort of his home, with his family at his side, following an extended period of declining health. Bob was born in Lynn, Massachusetts on Dec. 28, 1934, the son of Frederick and Margaret (Driscoll) Kenney. He was raised in Walpole, New Hampshire, attending Walpole schools and graduating from Walpole Academy with the Class of 1952. He enlisted in the Army in 1954 and served during the Korean Conflict. He was discharged from active duty in 1956. Bob was employed at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital working in the hospital's maintenance department. Previously, he worked at the former American Optical Company for 18 years as a line control inspector. One of his first jobs upon his return from military service was at Hubbard Farms in Walpole. He retired from Landmark College in Putney in 1996. Of his affiliations, he was a life member of VFW Carl Dessaint Post 1034 and was a member of American Legion Post 5. Bob was first married to Anna Pfeffer in Munich, Germany on Dec. 1, 1956. He later married Virginia (Koshinsky) Whitaker on June 18, 1988. Besides his wife Ginny, he leaves one stepson, Lance A. Whitaker of Vernon; two stepdaughters, Lois A. Sparks of Vernon and Laurie A. Brockway of Boulder, Colorado; and eight grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews, including a special niece, Linda Shepherd. Bob was predeceased by a stepson, Lawrence Whitaker Jr. Memorial information: Graveside committal services in Tyler Cemetery in Vernon will be conducted in the spring of 2024 at a date and time to be announced. Donations to the Vernon Volunteer Fire Dept., 2842 Fort Bridgman Rd., Vernon, VT 05354; or Rescue, Inc., P.O. Box 593, Brattleboro, VT 05302. To offer condolences, visit

• James Charles "Jim" Kiehle, 80, a beloved figure in Brattleboro. Died on Nov. 6, 2023. He was born on March 31, 1943, in Rochester, New York to Charles and Gertrude Kiehle. Jim's life was marked by a dedication to education, a passion for travel, and a commitment to community service. As a young boy, Jim had the unique opportunity to be a bat boy for the Rochester Redwings baseball team, where he likely developed a lifelong love for sports. He attended college at Wesleyan University and, after graduating, he joined the Peace Corps in 1964, serving in Liberia. During his time there, he played a vital role in building a school and met his first wife, Susan. Their union blessed them with two children, Ian and Allison. Upon returning from the Peace Corps, Jim continued his educational journey by earning a master's degree from Antioch College. He then embarked on a remarkable 38-year career as a teacher at Brattleboro Union High School. For eight of those years, he served as the head of the social studies department, leaving an indelible mark on countless students. Jim's dedication to education extended beyond the classroom. He was not only a passionate educator but also a staunch union supporter. At the local level, he served in the Windham Southeast Education Association, and at the state level he served as the last part-time president of the Vermont National Education Association. Jim fervently advocated for making the position a full-time role, recognizing the importance of ensuring that teachers' voices were heard, and their interests protected. Jim's commitment to education and his advocacy for the teaching profession touched the lives of many. His legacy, not just as an educator but as a champion for teachers' rights, will continue to inspire and benefit educators throughout Vermont. Jim's love for sports and commitment to the community were evident in his roles as a soccer referee, softball umpire, and high school golf coach. His love for travel took him around the world, as he believed that one should never take the same path twice. He cherished the time spent visiting with his three sisters in Chicago, Alaska, and the UK. Jim's retirement from teaching in 2006 did not mark the end of his service to the community. He became the community service coordinator for the high school and worked part-time at the Brattleboro Country Club in the grounds department. Additionally, he served on the Vermont Labor Board from 2008 to 2019 and was a director in the Vermont Golf Association, where he contributed to running amateur tournaments throughout the state. Jim is survived by his loving wife, Janis, his sisters Myra, Marcia, and Janet, his three children, Allison and her husband Steve, Ian and his wife Katherine, their children Charlie and Evelyn, and Matt. Memorial information: A memorial service will be held for Jim in the spring in the Brattleboro area. Donations to the Vermont Golf Association, 145 Pine Haven Shores Rd., Suite 2172, Shelburne, VT 05482, or to the Alzheimer's Association (

• Joyce Lorraine (Colyard) Roy, 66, of Whitingham. Died Oct. 17, 2023 at Albany (N.Y.) Medical Center. Joyce was born on Sept. 6, 1957, the daughter of the late Virginia Mary (Morris) Colyard and William Monroe Colyard in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Joyce was a very passionate person. She was a voracious reader, a master gardener, and a super painter. She enjoyed volunteering and loved laughter and quirky jokes. She loved to travel coast-to-coast, meeting new people, and seeing new places and things. Her most recent trip took her to Key West, Florida. She never made it to Europe, where she wanted to sip wine at a sidewalk café in Marseille. Her steady gait down Main Street and her hearty hello will be greatly missed. Joyce is survived by her sister, Kathleen Patricia Colyard; her life partner, Joey Butz; niece Teresa Butz and nephews Aaron Colyard and Charles Butz, all of Woodruff, South Carolina; her sons William Adonios Roy of Brattleboro and Oscar Thayer Smith of Whitingham; and granddaughters Danielle and Briella Roy of Brattleboro. Memorial information: At the request of the family, there are no formal funeral services. If friends desire, memorial gifts in Joyce's memory may be made to any suicide prevention service, in care of Covey-Allen and Shea Funeral Home, P.O. Box 215, Wilmington, VT 05363. To send condolences, visit

• Marion E. Whidden Tenney, 92, died on Nov. 4, 2023, in Springfield, Vermont. Marion was born on Sept. 8, 1931 in Grafton to Horace and Rosie (Wyman) Whidden and was one of nine children. She graduated from Rockpoint Girls Academy in May 1950 and married James W.G. Tenney on Aug. 12, 1950. Together, they had four children. Marion enjoyed hunting and fishing and, later in life, playing Bingo and being with her Bingo friends. She is survived by one brother, Frank (Joan) of Florida and Vermont; one sister, Iverna of Chester; three daughters, Joyce (Ed) of Athens, Susan (David) of Grafton, and Addie (Charles) of Athens. She is also survived by nine grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild. Marion was predeceased by her husband, three brothers and three sisters, a son, David, and one great-grandson, Roger. Memorial information: Honoring her wishes, services will be private at Houghtonville Cemetery in Grafton.

• Mary E. Tyler, 94, of Dummerston. Died on Nov. 2, 2023, surrounded by her loving family as she peacefully concluded a long, fruitful life. Born on Nov. 24, 1928, in Jersey City, New Jersey, Mary was one of five children born to Elizabeth (O'Neill) Canny and Patrick Canny. After completing high school in Jersey City, she exchanged vows with Terry Tyler on July 4, 1953, and they established their lifelong home in Dummerston. As a devoted mother of five, Mary embraced the daily routine of driving her children to St. Michael's School, a 7-mile journey to Brattleboro that held immense importance for her. As her children grew older, she dedicated herself to part-time work while they attended school. Mary was actively engaged in the West River Missions. She served as a Eucharistic minister at Our Lady of Mercy in Putney. In addition, she was a member of the Daughters of Isabella for many years. One of her proudest achievements came in her 60s when she earned her Certified Nurses Aide certificate. In her later years, Mary discovered a passion for art and eagerly attended art classes at the Brattleboro Senior Center, forming lasting friendships with fellow artists well into her 80s. She also found joy and camaraderie in the "Stitch and Bitch" quilting group at the Dummerston Community Center. Demonstrating her unwavering commitment to her church, Mary spearheaded the bake sale fundraiser for Our Lady of Mercy Church in Putney. Her family and her church family were her greatest loves, and she fearlessly embraced her faith, exemplified even in her final moments as she held her rosary beads close. Mary is survived by her son Terrence and his wife Lois of Hubbardston, Massachusetts; Brian and his wife Joann of Dummerston; and her daughter Kathleen and her husband James of Dummerston. Her nine grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren, and her oldest sister, Kathleen Castle, age 102, of Jersey City, also survive her. Mary was preceded in death by her husband Terry, her sons Kevin and Jude, her grandson Jimmy, and her great-grandson Callan. Memorial information: A funeral Mass washeld on Nov. 11 at Saint Michael's Roman Catholic Church in Brattleboro. Donations to Our Lady of the Valley, 92 Grafton Rd., Townshend, VT 05353. To offer condolences, visit

This Milestones item was submitted to The Commons.

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