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Theresa Canillas Sprague


Saturday, March 16, 2019

BURLINGTON, VT — Theresa (Terry) Canillas Sprague passed away on March 12 in Burlington, VT following a period of declining health.

Terry was a proud first generation American. She was born in Lebanon NH, the daughter of Frank and Helen Canillas. She grew up in Lebanon and spent the majority of her life in Vermont and New Hampshire. She attended the University of New Hampshire and received a degree from Norwich University through their adult education program.

Terry had a varied and vibrant career. She raised and showed Alaskan Malamutes, including a champion. She showed her dogs in the famous Westminster Dog Show on numerous occasions.

She was a member of the Vermont Academy Community working in the college counseling office for a number of years. She also served as a house parent.

Terry was proudest of her long career as a journalist with the Brattleboro Reformer. She began as a local correspondent and rose to the position of Assistant Managing editor. Along the way, she received many awards both for journalism and for photography. Her work spanned from local coverage of town and school meetings all the way to a one on one interview with the late President George H.W. Bush. An avid follower and recorder of Vermont politics, she interviewed Senators Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy many times in their early careers. She held the respect of both her peers and readers throughout Vermont.

In her later years she faced significant health issues, and faced these with grace and acceptance.

Terry is survived by a sister Connie (Richard) Patch of Lebanon, sister in law Janet Canillas of Lebanon NH; three children, Laura (Robert) Herrin of Flagstaff, AZ, Molly (James) Kurent of Burlington, VT and John Sprague of Redondo Beach, CA. She is also survived by four grandchildren, as well as nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her former husband, Bertrand Sprague of Brattleboro, VT and brother Frank Canillas of Lebanon, NH.

There will be no calling hours and services will be private and at the convenience of the family. Donations in her memory may be made to the charity of choice.