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Raymond Romeo DesRoches

Newbury, Vt. — Raymond Romeo DesRoches, 82, died peacefully, Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013, at the Grafton County Nursing Home, North Haverhill, N.H., after suffering many years from Multiple System Atrophy (MSA).

He was born in Hartford, Conn., Sept. 8, 1930, a son of Romeo and Eva (Caron) DesRoches.

Ray grew up in East Hartford, Conn. and attended East Hartford High School where he met and married his high school sweetheart, Maureen Moriarty and was married for 59 years. He raised his family in Windsor, Conn. and eventually in Bloomfield, Conn. where he was a private contractor. For several years, Ray volunteered his time for the Boy Scouts in Windsor, Conn. An adventurous outdoor enthusiast, Ray loved to hike, camp, fly fish, ride horses, and explore the beauty of the woods with his family. He was a member of the Farmington River Fly Fisherman’s Association and the founder of the Conn. Bow Hunters Association, where he competed successfully in many archery tournaments. The outdoors was his sanctuary where he would spend time with his family or take quiet walks in the woods. Hunting, especially bow hunting, was a big part of Ray’s life and brought together many family members and dear friends for weekends of camaraderie and life long relationships. Ray’s passion for art was evident throughout his life.

He taught art classes for many years in Stuart, Fla. where he resided during the winter months. He sculpted clay, carved wood, painted in oils, watercolors and mixed media until just a few years ago. He sold many of his works of art proudly, and gifted many paintings to friends.

A goal-oriented man with many dreams fulfilled, Ray and family built a beautiful home in Vermont where he and Maureen eventually retired. Over the years, Ray built and restored many stonewalls on his property that were magnificent. This home was, and still is, the heart of the family where laughter, weddings and many fond memories were built for generations. Ray was a man of many talents, athletic skill and great humor. He was a well-loved husband, father, uncle, neighbor and friend to all who knew him.

He was predeceased by his parents, Romeo and Eva (Caron) DesRoches; and a beloved daughter-in-law, Christine Moody DesRoches in 2007.

Survivors include his wife of 59 years, Maureen Moriarty DesRoches; a son, Kevin DesRoches and Donna O’Keefe, of Canton, Conn.; daughter, Denise Taylor and husband, Brian, of Albany, N.H.; daughter, Sharon Leaska and husband, Michael of Somers, Conn.; and son, Keith DesRoches, of Underhill, Vt.; grandchildren, Kelley and husband Ashley Cotton, of Jericho, Vt., Cathy and husband, Matt Bristol of Richmond, Vt., Taylor and Micalea Leaska of Somers, Conn., and Sianna and Harper DesRoches of Underhill, Vt.; great granddaughter, Sophie Cotton of Jericho, Vt.; a brother, Normand DesRoches and companion, Dora Wright of Littleton, N.H.; a sister-in-law, Vilma Langh and husband John of Enfield, Conn.; and many beloved nieces and nephews.

There will be no calling hours.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013, at 11 a.m. at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, 15 Pine Street, Woodsville, N.H. with Father Jeffrey Statz officiating.

A Celebration of Life for Ray will be conducted in the spring at the convenience of the family.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Raymond’s name may be made to: SDS/MSA Support Group, 8311 Brier Creek Parkway, Suite 105-434 Raleigh, NC 27617 or to Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation, Inc., 103 Vision Way, Bloomfield, CT 06002.

For more information or to offer an online condolence, please go to

Ricker Funeral Home, Woodsville, N.H. is in charge of arrangements.