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Bernice Fitchett

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POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- Bernice Henry Fitchett, 86, died at Vassar Brothers Medical Center on Dec. 31, 2007.

She was born Aug. 18, 1921, to Walter D. and Hilda Agle Henry in Eden, N.Y. She attended Hamburg High School, graduated from Cornell University Class of 1943, and the National Apprenticeship at Greenfield Restaurants in Detroit. She was a dietitian there and later served as an agent for the Buffalo City Extension service until she married Edwin E. Fitchett on Oct. 11, 1947.

Following her marriage she worked in public relations for Fitchett Bros. Dairy by publishing recipes in the Poughkeepsie Journal incorporating dairy products. These recipes became known as “Bernie Fitchett Suggests É”

In 1975 she served on the Colonial Lifestyle Committee for the Dutchess County Bicentennial representing Colonial cooking. She authored several cookbooks including “The Bernie Fitchett Hudson Valley Recipe Book”, “Recipes of ‘76”, “The Children’s Home Cookbook” as well as personal family cookbooks.

Earlier she was a den mother for Cub Scout Troop 18 at Violet Avenue School and served several years on the PTA. She was a member of the Fairview Home Bureau for a number of years. She also organized many dinners at the First Baptist Church and helped give leadership to numerous Christmas pageants. Later she was on the executive committee for the Dutchess County Genealogical Society. She was also involved with the Antique Study Club and was very interested in gardening.

Mrs. Fitchett served for nine years on the board of directors for the Children’s Home in Poughkeepsie including three years as president. She also served as vice president in charge of buildings and grounds, chairman of publicity, and had responsibilities for staff and food service.

She will be remembered for her cheerful disposition, her devotion to her family, generosity of spirit and interest in all people, as well as her love of cooking and her amazing flower gardens.

In addition to her husband of 60 years, she is survived by her three sons, Gary (Christine), Wayne (Patti), Neil (Chris) and seven grandchildren, Colleen (Andrew) Moser, Jocelyn (Kristoffer) Walker, and Todd Fitchett, Keri (Peter) Powlison and Eric Fitchett, and Marla (Michael) Cinilia and Jeremy Fitchett. She is also survived by two brothers, Earl Henry and Walter J. Henry (Ruth) of Eden, N.Y., and numerous nephews and nieces. She was predeceased by her brother Harold Henry of Eden, N.Y.

Family and friends may attend calling hours at the Timothy Doyle Funeral Home, 371 Hooker Avenue on Friday, Jan. 4, from 4 to 8 p.m. Funeral Services will be held at the funeral home at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 5, followed by graveside services at the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie, 10 Children’s Way, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601, or the First Baptist Church of Poughkeepsie, 260 Mill St., Poughkeepsie, NY 12601.
Published in Bennington Banner on Jan. 3, 2008
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