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December 23rd, 2014

Obituaries

ROBERT L. DEFORGE

October 30, 1935 -

Burial Date August 23, 2014

Obituaries » ROBERT L. DEFORGE

DEFORGE, ROBERT LAWRENCE “BOB,” of Brookfield, was born October 30, 1935, in St. Johnsbury, to Lawrence and Bernadette LaChance DeForge. He was the beloved husband for 43 years of his sweetheart, Elizabeth “Beth” Santora DeForge. He is also survived by two sons of whom he was very proud, Jonathan (and wife Tessa Wilson) and Peter Lawrence. He has two surviving siblings, Donald DeForge (and Lily) and Judy (and Bill) DeForge DesRochers, and a nephew, Jeff, and niece, Danielle. He was predeceased by his brother, Paul DeForge, and his parents. Bob attended school in St. Johnsbury, as well as Indian Orchard, Mass. After two years at the St. Johnsbury Vocational Center, he attended St. Patrick’s Academy in Binghamton, N. Y., where he graduated in 1953. He attended St. John’s Seminary in Boston, and was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood on February 2, 1961. He served as a curate in Newport, St. Albans and Middlebury. He received his master’s in counseling from St. Michael’s College in 1971, and began work at Washington County Mental Health in June of that year. He started the WCMH Day Treatment Program, and soon after became director of Rehabilitation and Treatment Services until his retirement in 1998. He was a member and officer of the Vermont Psychological Association, as well as NAMI, and was highly regarded as both a colleague and as an advocate for the mentally ill. Bob also served as president of the Brookfield Historical Society and on the Brookfield Elementary and RUHS school boards. Bob and Beth (Santora) married on August 28, 1971. They moved to Brookfield, in March 1972, where they continued to share their lives until his death. Bob was always interested in life, and enjoyed a variety of hobbies. As a youth, he was a Boy Scout and was very proud of his Order of the Arrow and Eagle Scout awards. He was a lifelong ham radio operator (K1HKI) and a founding member of the Central Vermont Amateur Radio Association. For the past 18 years, his passion had been building and operating his G-scale garden RR on his property in Brookfield. He and Beth especially loved travelling to the Southwest, riding on steam trains there and visiting Native American sites. In recent years, Bob became the faithful and enthusiastic safety boat driver for Dragonheart Vermont, where Beth paddles. He treasured his time with Dragonheart and the caring connections he made through the organization. The memorial service will be held on August 23 at 1 p.m. at Bob and Beth’s house, 1607 East St. in Brookfield.

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