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Joseph A. Rizio

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MANCHESTER -- Joseph A. Rizio, a lifelong resident of Manchester, died on Wednesday, June 6, 2007, at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center in Bennington.

He was born on July 19, 1940, to Anna Sheldon and Daley Rizio. Joe grew up on Cass Terrace in Manchester, playing nightly neighborhood baseball games and going fishing and berry picking with his older brother Richard.

Joe attended Manchester schools and graduated from Burr and Burton Seminary in 1958. Further education included Lawrence Academy, Middlebury College, and a degree in accounting from Champlain College. Joe was an avid athlete, skiing and playing football, baseball and golf. He was also very happy in the woods. Joe was a sportsman who enjoyed fishing and hunting. He delighted in spending deer season with his many friends and his son at his East Mountain camp.

Joe participated in a number of civic organizations. He was a ski instructor at Bromley Mountain and a charter member of the Manchester Rescue Squad. He was also a member of the Manchester Rod and Gun Club. Joe was a trustee of Burr and Burton Seminary for 15 years. He was the treasurer for the Vermont Golf Association for over 25 years. As tournament chairman for both Equinox and Stratton Country Clubs, Joe was well known in the golfing community.

Joe had a strong work ethic and high personal standards. He kept books and did taxes for many in the Manchester area. With his brother and their close friend Richard Goddard, Joe founded Rizio and Goddard Builders, a construction company known for its excellence.

Joe was a generous, gentle and fun-loving person. He had a ready smile and a true interest in others. He loved sharing stories, playing cards and being outdoors. He was very fond of pets and was never allowed to go to the animal shelter alone, for fear that he would adopt a whole troop of cats and dogs.

Joe married Joan Swezey on Oct. 6, 1962, at the First Congregational Church in Manchester. They lived on Williams Street before purchasing a home on Rootville Road, where they raised Kimberlee and Joseph. Kim still lives in Manchester. Joseph lives in Wilmington with his wife Jessica and Joe’s four beloved grandchildren: Mackenzie, Grace, Abigail, and Luke.

A memorial service will be held on Monday, June 11, at 2 p.m. at the First Congregational Church with burial following at Factory Point Cemetery. Calling hours will be Sunday, June 10 from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Brewster Funeral Home, 34 Park Place, Manchester. Memorial contributions may be made to the Vermont Golf Association Golf Scholarship Fund or Second Chance Animal Shelter c/o Brewster Funeral Service, PO Box 885, Manchester, VT 05255. For directions or to send personal e-mail condolences to the family, visit http://www.sheafuneralhomes.com.
Published in Bennington Banner from June 8 to June 9, 2007
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