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Robert P. Rutnik

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WEST WARDSBORO -- Robert P. Rutnik, 63, of West Wardsboro, died Monday afternoon May 31, 2004 at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center in Bennington, while fighting cancer.

He was born on April 28, 1941 in East Orange, N.J., the son of Rita (Slinger) Rutnik and Robert Paul Rutnik and grew up in northern N.J. While in his twenties he developed a love for the state of Vermont and purchased property in West Wardsboro at that time.

Robert worked for 30 years in New Jersey as a civil engineer. In 1997 he moved to Vermont full-time and worked for the Agency of Transportation, retiring in 2003.

He had a profound appreciation for Vermont and spent nearly every weekend at his home in West Wardsboro until moving here full-time. He took great joy in caring for his property, experiencing the outdoors by snowmobiling, hunting and fishing. He loved to entertain family and friends at his home. Robert was a great storyteller and loved to regale family and friends with stories of moose and bear sightings and simpler things such as an outing to the store. Within his family, his pancakes were unrivaled, and he loved preparing a breakfast feast for overnight guests.

He is survived by his wife Darlene of West Wardsboro; a daughter, Tracey, and her fiancé Paul Jackson of Washington, D.C.; a son, Paul, and his wife Danielle, of Hawthorne, N.J.; a step-daughter, Heidi, and her husband Todd Scalzott of Dunn Loring, Va.; a brother, Richard Rutnik of Fort Pierce, Fla.; three grandchildren, Mac Rutnik and Delaney and Kalina Scalzott; and his two nephews, Brian Rutnik and his wife Audra and their daughters Sierra and Samantha, and Richard Rutnik. He also leaves behind his beloved labrador, Webster.

Memorial services will be held at the family home at 1210 Upper Podunk Road, off Route 100 in West Wardsboro on Friday afternoon at 3 p.m. The Rev. Suzanne Curtis of the South Newfane Church will officiate. The family suggests that donations in Mr. Rutnik’s memory be made to the VCF Fund at the Vermont Community Foundation, P.O. Box 30 Middlebury, VT 05753.

Arrangements are under the care of Covey & Allen Funeral Home in Wilmington.
Published in Bennington Banner from June 2 to June 3, 2004
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