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Ralph Hayes

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CASTLETON -- Ralph Burness “Rex” Hayes died Dec. 10, 2007 at the Bennington Veterans Home.

He was born on his great great grandfather, Oliver Hitchcock’s, farm in West Haven, Vt. on Oct. 24, 1911, the son of Mary (Hitchcock) and Burness Scott Hayes.

His family later moved to Fair Haven, and he attended Fair Haven Graded and Fair Haven High School. He graduated from the Castleton Normal School and from Boston University. He received a master’s degree from Boston University and did graduate work, later, at the University of Connecticut.

Mr. Hayes first taught at a one-room school in East Concord, in the Northeast Kingdom, and, after that, in Forest Dale and in West Windsor and Brownsville Vt. Later, he taught in Cheshire, Yalesville, and was principal in Wallingford Conn. He was headwaiter first at the Cedar Grove Hotel and then the Prospect House Hotel on Lake Bomoseen summers from when he was in college until these hotels closed in the 1960s.

In 1941, he married Geraldine Gibbs of Castleton. During the Second World War, he was an army weatherman stationed in southern California.

Mr. Hayes will be remembered as a handsome charmer, a man who loved parties and gatherings, who was always interested in people, where they were from and what they did, and who loved games of every sort.

He was predeceased by his wife of 49 years in 1990. He leaves behind an older sister Elizabeth Hayes Balch of Rogue River, Ore., two daughters Holly Hitchcock, Pamela Hayes Rehlen (and her husband John) both of Castleton, and four grandchildren, Mary Rehlen Osborne of Montpelier, Wenger Rehlen of Castleton, Gibbs Rehlen of Rome, Italy, and Inza Rehlen of Burlington.

The funeral will be held Saturday December 15 at 11 o’clock at the Federated Church in Castleton, the church where Mr. Hayes was baptized and married. Following the service, the family will receive friends across the street from the church at The Manse.

Burial will be at a later date in the Gibbs family plot in Castleton’s Hillside Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Federated Church restoration fund. Arrangements are under the care of the Mallory Memorial Funeral Home in Fair Haven, Vt. Mallory-memorial.-com
Published in Bennington Banner on Dec. 12, 2007
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