Merritt S. Hewitt Jr.

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NORTH BENNINGTON - Merritt S. "Bud" Hewitt Jr., 93, died Wednesday, May 22, 2013.

He was born Oct. 28, 1919, in Shaftsbury, the son of Merritt and Mahala (Matteson) Hewitt.

He attended two different one-room schools as a child, and graduated from North Bennington High School. In 1939, he graduated from Green Mountain College in Poultney, with an associate degree and 46 years later, earned a bachelor's degree in environmental studies (1985) from Southern Vermont College.

He married Shirley Susan Smith of Lee, Mass., in June of 1942. They were married for more than 62 years, and she died in 2004. Together they started dairy farming in North Bennington (Town of Shaftsbury), and eventually purchased five farms in the area. Needing a name for the farm and prefix for registered cattle, they decided on Double TT Farm, incorporating the TT in Merritt and Hewitt.

As the dairy business became more challenging, he turned his attention to real estate and in 1963, he passed the Vermont real estate exams. Double TT Realty was formed and construction of what are now 40 homes on Harvest Hills and Hewitt Drive began.

The real estate business proved successful, and they sold the dairy cattle and equipment in 1970.

He enjoyed working in real estate enormously. He served as president of the Southwest Board of Realtors, and in 1971, was chosen "Realtor of the Year" for the state of Vermont. He also served on the Vermont Board of Appraisers for several years. In addition, he spent 25 years of service as a bank director, starting with the First National Bank of North Bennington and later with Catamount National Bank, which eventually became Merchants Bank.

He held the office of Town Representative from Shaftsbury and then Bennington County Senator for 18 years; ten of those years serving on the Appropriations Committee. He was especially proud of his work on Act 250 and creation of the Green Mountain Passport. Locally his bill to make Lake Shaftsbury a State Park was introduced and passed while he was in the Senate.

In addition to civic work in Montpelier, he was a Life Member of the NorShaft Lions and the Bennington Elks Lodge 567, as well as a member of the Rutland Cairo Shrine for more than 50 years. He served on the boards of the Old First Church, the Bennington County Resource Conservation District, the Bennington Museum and the Bennington Chamber of Commerce. Unable to attend college because of WWII, supporting higher education was a constant interest; he served 12 years as a trustee of the University of Vermont, 12 years as a trustee of Green Mountain College, and was a trustee of Southern Vermont College, retiring in 1995. He was also a founding member and past president of Sage City Syndicate.

He enjoyed golf and was a member of Manchester Golf Course for 17 years. More recently, he enjoyed gardening and card games.

Survivors include four children, Sandra of California, Malcolm of Massachusetts, and Karen and Brian, both of Vermont; five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by a daughter, Joyce Hewitt.

Memorial services will be held Tuesday, May 28, 2013, at 1 p.m. from the Old First Church in Old Bennington. The Rev. Kenneth Clark, pastor, will officiate.

Private committal services will take place at the convenience of the family at Grandview Cemetery in North Bennington.

Memorial contributions may be made to either the Old First Church or the NorShaft Lions Sight and Hearing Fund through the office of the Mahar & Son Funeral Home, 628 Main St., Bennington, VT 05201;
Published in Rutland Herald from May 24 to May 25, 2013
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