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Raymond Charles Hodgdon

White River Jct., Vt. — Raymond Charles Hodgdon, 86, of White River Jct., died on Tuesday, June 11, 2013, after a long illness. He died at home, surrounded by loving family.

Ray was born in Norwich, Vt., on Oct. 17, 1926, to Charles and Nellie (Clark) Hodgdon. He attended Beaver Meadow Schoolhouse, a one-room schoolhouse in Norwich. As a teenager, he joined the US Navy and served in World War II. After training at the Naval Training Center in Sampson, N.Y., he was based on the USS Columbus and travelled the world, including England, where he met King George VI. After two years of active duty as Seaman First Class, he served as a reservist for an additional six years. After leaving active duty, he returned to Vermont and two years later, on a cold, rainy day, met Doris Thibodeau. They married on Jan. 13, 1951 and have been together for 61 years.

Being raised on a family farm, Ray was a hard worker. After serving in the Navy and working for a brief time with Dexter Carbonneau, he worked for the Town of Hartford Public Works Department for 47 years as the chief mechanic. His job with the town was comprised of not only mechanic work for public service vehicles and equipment, but also a snowplowing route. In 1953, Ray and Doris bought a small farm in White River Jct. and made it their own, working the land. He loved gardening and they kept a large vegetable garden.

Ray loved everything about the outdoors. He and his best friend, Jim Bingham, shared much time together deer hunting and riding motorcycles. Ray had an Indian Chief and Jim a Harley Davidson. There were many times over the years that Ray would reminisce about the good old days and their mischievous adventures.

Vermont Life magazine published a profile of Ray’s life titled “Vermonter: Ray Hodgdon” in their 1986 winter edition which told about his career and family life. It mentioned that he followed his father’s footsteps in his municipal career as well as a long family tradition of farming.

He was a 26 year member of Post Number 26 of the American Legion.

Ray was predeceased by his parents, Charles and Nellie. In addition to his wife Doris, he is survived by his son, Andy Hodgdon and his wife, Nadine Hodgdon, of Hartford, Vt.; his daughter, Dale Cloutier of Lebanon, N.H., and his daughter, Cindy Welch and her husband, Chester Welch, of Enfield, N.H. Ray has four grandsons, two granddaughters, and one great granddaughter. One of seven children, Ray is survived by his sisters, Irene Forte of Hartford, Conn. and Phyllis Batchelder of Wilder, Vt. He was predeceased by siblings, Ronald Hodgdon, Elsie Goodall, Seymour Hodgdon, and Christine Haslam. He is also survived by Charles Hodgdon of Norwich, his half-brother.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 13, 2013, at 2 p.m. at Knight Funeral Home in White River Jct. Thoughts of condolence can be left at www.knightfuneralhomes.com. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Beaver Meadow School House Association, P.O. Box 1680, Norwich, VT 05055.