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Jean Terese Burns

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Jean Terese Burns 1929 - 2009 MANCHESTER Jean Terese Burns died June 30, 2009, after a courageous year-long battle with cancer. She passed away at home, surrounded by loving family and friends and in view of her beloved flower gardens and the beautiful mountains of Vermont. Born on May 2, 1929, in Queens, N.Y., daughter of Aloysius and Anna Miller Gorman, she earned a bachelor's in philosophy from St. John's University in Brooklyn, then left for a four-year stint in Europe to work for what was then known as the Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration (ICEM). Upon her return to the United States in 1956, she took a position as Information Officer for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in Manhattan, and continued to work for the UNHCR until she married in 1963. Jean learned to ski in Europe and continued to enjoy the sport on trips to Vermont, where she met Frank Burns, owner of the Skylight Ski Lodge in Winhall. On Nov. 30, 1963, she and Frank were married at the Benedictine Priory in Weston; they were the first couple to be married there. Jean and Frank ran the Skylight Lodge until the late 1990's. There they raised two children, Bernadette and Claudia. In the midst of raising children and running Skylight, Jean returned to school part-time to get her master's from Antioch of Ohio, which at that time had a branch at Bennington College. After earning her master's, Jean worked for more than 25 years at Rutland Mental Health Services (RMHS), where she negotiated for housing and shelter for chronic, severely mentally ill clients. A lifelong and serious reader of both fiction and non-fiction, Jean was a proud member of Manchester's Monday Club, a distinguished 100-year-old organization. She was a great conversationalist and never shied away from a good philosophical discussion. She enjoyed hiking, skiing, and swimming, and started biking in her early 70's with Wednesdays on Wheels (WOW), a local bike club. Jean's love of travel began when she was in Europe and remained a lifelong passion. In fact, she was on vacation in Damascus, Syria, in 1956 when she decided it was time to leave Europe and return to the U.S. Nonetheless, she continued to travel throughout the world until recently but was always happy to return to her adopted home state of Vermont. Jean leaves her children, Bernadette Burns of Sunnyvale, Calif., and Claudia Burns of Baltimore, Md.; her two brothers, Jim Gorman of Mobile, Ala., and Ed Gorman of Long Beach, Calif.; her four sisters, Pat (Gorman) Jones of Congers, N.Y., Sr. Kathleen Gorman of Tucson, Ariz., Anne (Gorman) Golden of N. Kingstown, R.I., and Naples, Fla., and Helen (Gorman) Gookin of San Rafael, Calif., and numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband, Frank, on Nov. 14, 2006, and by her brother, Jerome Gorman. FUNERAL NOTICE: Visiting hours for Jean will be Monday, July 6, 2009, from 5 to 8 p.m. at BREWSTER FUNERAL SERVICE, 34 Park Place, Manchester, when the family will be in attendance. To send the family personal email condolences, please visit www.sheafuneralhomes.com
Published in Bennington Banner on July 1, 2009
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