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Donat J. Ratelle

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BENNINGTON -- Donat J. Ratelle, 86, a resident of South Street and a former longtime resident of Jefferson Heights died Monday, Oct. 27, 2003 at his residence following a long illness.

Born in Harrisville, R.I. on March 14, 1917 he was the son of the late Eugene and Mary Jane (Theroux) Ratelle. He received his education in the Harrisville and Woonsocket, R.I. schools. A World War II Navy veteran, Mr. Ratelle saw action in the Pacific theatre.

Mr. Ratelle married the former Yvette C. Ethier July 12, 1938 at Precious Blood Church in Woonsocket. For the past 60 years they have been members of Sacred Heart St. Francis de Sales Church in Bennington.

In earlier years Mr. and Mrs. Ratelle owned the Beau May Diner in Woonsocket and later the Woodford Inn and Motel in Woodford.

During that time he also was employed by the Vermont State Highway Department. Mr. Ratellle later purchased the former Knotty Pine Restaurant in Bennington which he renamed the Beau May Restaurant. At the time of his retirement he was employed as food service director for the Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union. He also was employed with his son and family at Downtown Paint and Paper in Bennington.

A very active member of the community, Mr. Ratelle was a life member of Knights of Columbus Council 307, Elks Lodge 567, VFW Post 1332, Moose Lodge 1223 and American Legion Post 13 all of Bennington.

Mr. Ratelle enjoyed his family, working in his yard, keeping his car clean, the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots. Survivors include his wife Yvette Ratelle of Bennington; two daughters and their husbands, Joanne and Jay Grube of Reading, Pa. and Frances and Michael Devenow of Bennington; a son and his wife, Jean “John” and Betsy Ratelle of Bennington; 12 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; two sisters, Dorothy Cote of Bellingham, Mass. and Laura Petrin of Cumberland, R.I.; several nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews and cousins.

Mr. Ratelle was predeceased by a sister, Lydia Petrin and a brother, Sylvio Ratelle.

The funeral will be held from the Mahar & Son Funeral Home Thursday, Oct. 30, at 10:30 a.m. with a prayer and from All Faith’s Chapel at the Vermont Veterans Home at 11 a.m. where the liturgy of Christian death and burial will be offered by Rev. Michael A. Demasi, chaplain.

Friends may call at the Mahar & Son Funeral Home Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m. when the family will be in attendance. The wake service will be offered Wednesday evening.

Burial will take place in the family lot in Park Lawn Cemetery.

Contributions in Mr. Donat Ratelle’s memory may be made to either Bennington Area Home Health or the Green Mountain Chapter of American Red Cross through the office of the Mahar & Son Funeral Home, 628 Main St., Bennington, VT 05201.

All members of the following orgainzations are asked to meet at the Mahar & Son Funeral Home Wednesday evening to conduct services in memory of Mr. Ratelle: Knights of Columbus at 6:00, Moose Lodge at 6:15, VFW Post 1332 at 6:30, American Legion Post 13 at 6:45 and Elks Lodge 567 at 7.
Published in Bennington Banner on Oct. 28, 2003
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