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Carole Blake


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

White River Jct., Vt. — Carole Blake, 73, of White River Jct. passed away on Friday, March 18, 2016, at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Boston. She was born on March 23, 1942, in Hanover N.H., the daughter of Lauris O. and Helen N. Blake.

Attending local schools she graduated from Lebanon High School in 1960. She received a BA from New England Conservatory of Music in 1964 and a Master of Education from Boston State College in 1971. Beginning her professional career in Medway, Mass., she went on to teach in both the Woonsocket, R.I. and Malden, Mass. school systems, retiring from teaching in June of 2000 from a position at the Mascoma Valley Regional School. She was a member of the Music Educators National Conference, and the New Hampshire Music Educators Association. In 1998, she was honored in the publication of Who’s Who Among American Teachers. She was named New Hampshire Distinguished Educator and presented with a New Hampshire Excellence in Education Award in 2002.Upon retirement she continued as Director of the Upper Valley Community Band, a position she had assumed in 1990 when the organization was known as the Hanover Norwich Community Band. The name was changed to reflect the broad membership of the group. Retiring in 2014 to the position of Director Emeritus, she ended an involvement of over 30 years.Under her leadership the UVCB participated in two international exchange concerts in Joigny, France and Heinsheim, Germany as well as numerous performances in the New England Festival of Bands in Boston. She was involved for many years with the Yankee Brass Band, participating in summer concerts throughout New England.While Carole’s life was surrounded by music, she also loved sailing, skiing, golfing and summer vacations to a family cottage on Lake Champlain. Outside her dedication to teaching of music she was devoted to the care and company of her cats.

Carole is survived by her sister, June Gyger and husband Tom of Bridgton, Maine; two nephews, David (Kim Bownes) of Campton, N.H., and Daniel (Jessica) of Bridgton. Her parents predeceased her.

Carole has brought the pleasure of listening and performing music to many folks with concerts in the park, Lebanon Opera House, local parades and music exchanges. Mainly she has inspired hundreds of youth and adults to open their cases, take out their horns and play in a band. With our toes tapping and our hands clapping we send hearty thanks to Carole Blake for leading so many musical groups for so many years. A memorial service will be planned in the future.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Upper Valley Humane Society, 300 Old Route 10, Enfield NH 03748 or The Upper Valley Community Band, PO Box 4378, White River Junction VT 05001.