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Lawrence Powers

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Lawrence Powers Obituary
Lawrence F. Powers

1920-2014 NORTH BENNINGTON Lawrence F. Powers, a native and lifelong resident of North Bennington, died at the age of 93 on Friday, 7 February, at Emeritus at Fillmore Pond. Known as "Mr. North Bennington" for his deep involvement in the life of the village, Mr. Powers had served as a Village Trustee, as a member of the board of trustees of both the Park-McCullough House and the John G. McCullough Library, as president of the board of directors of Paran Recreations, as a charter member of the NorShaft Little League, and as president of the NorShaft Lions Club. In addition, he was a member of the North Bennington School Board and served for more than 25 years on the North Bennington Water Board. In each of these capacities, Mr. Powers served as an unofficial historian and as a staunch advocate for maintaining village independence. From 1974 to 1980, Mr. Powers was a member of the Vermont House of Representatives and served for four years as chairman of the House Commerce Committee. He also served as president of the board of trustees of the Vermont Veterans Home and as a member of the board of trustees of both Southern Vermont College and the Bennington Museum. In addition, he was a longtime member of the board of listers for the town of Bennington, as well as a member of the Bennington Board of Civil Authority. Born at home in North Bennington on 12 August, 1920, Mr. Powers was the son of Michael F. and Marion (Church) Powers. A 1939 graduate of North Bennington High School, Mr. Powers graduated from St. Joseph Business College in 1941 and worked for the General Electric Company in Pittsfield, Mass., from August 1941 until 30 June 1942, when he entered military service. Mr. Powers initially served as a cryptographer and control tower operator in the Belgian Congo. Later, after returning to the States and graduating as a second lieutenant from the Aviation Cadet Center in San Antonio, Texas, he was again sent overseas and flew combat missions over Italy and Germany. It was while working at GE that Mr. Powers met his future wife, Bernice Boldyga of Housatonic, Mass. He spotted her one night at a movie theatre in the company of a fellow GE employee and her sister. The next day Mr. Powers insisted that the employee introduce him to Miss Boldyga. The two briefly dated before Mr. Powers was sent overseas and thereafter sent one another letters during the war and met whenever Mr. Powers was home on leave. They were married on 16 June, 1945 at All Saints Church in Housatonic. After being released from active service, Mr. Powers joined the Air Force Reserve. In October 1945, Mr. Powers joined the family business, M.F. Powers & Sons, with his father and his brother, Richard Powers. In June 1951 Mr. Powers was recalled to active service by the Air Force, serving at the Bryan Air Force base in Bryan, Texas. He was released from active service in June 1951 and retired from the Air Force Reserve as a major in 1964. Following the sale of Powers Market in 1981, Mr. and Mrs. Powers divided their time between North Bennington in the warmer months and Dunnellon, Fla., in the winter for the next 22 years. Mr. Powers was an avid golfer and won several championships at the Mount Anthony Country Club in Bennington and Rainbow Springs Country Club in Dunnellon. After selling their home in Dunnellon and returning to North Bennington for good, Mr. Powers began work on stories about North Bennington and published two books: The Store and Other Stories of North Bennington and Paran Creek Memories. Mr. Powers was predeceased by Mrs. Powers, his wife of 66 years. Survivors include a son, Timothy, of Metairie, La.; a daughter and son-in law, Christine and David Hibma of South Burlington, Vt.; a granddaughter, Margaret Hibma, of Melrose, Mass.; several nieces, nephews, and cousins. The family wishes to thank the employees of Emeritus at Fillmore Pond for the loving, excellent care that they provided during the final year of Mr. Powers' life. Memorial donations may be made to the Fund for North Bennington. Calling hours will be Tuesday, 11 February, from 5 to 7 p.m., at the Rev. Michael A. Demasi Parish Hall at St. John the Baptist Church in North Bennington. The Liturgy of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Wednesday, 12 February, at St. John the Baptist Church, North Bennington. Memorial donations may be made to the Fund for North Bennington through the Mahar & Son Funeral Home, 628 Main St., Bennington, VT 05201.

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Published in Bennington Banner on Feb. 11, 2014
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