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George Champoux Sr.

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George J. Champoux Sr.

1912 - 2015 LENOX George J. Champoux Sr., 102, died on Feb. 3, 2015. Born in Springfield, to Frederick A. Champoux and Ellen (Donoghue) Champoux in 1912, he graduated from Cathedral High School in 1931 and attended St. Michael's College in Winooski, Vt. Enlisting in the US Army in 1942, he served as First Sergeant in an amphibious hospital unit evacuating the wounded from New Guinea and the Philippines. His company was awarded the Meritorious Service Plaque by Gen. W. Krueger, commanding general Sixth Army. He was awarded the Asiatic-Pacific medal with three bronze stars and the Philippine Liberation medal with two bronze stars. While serving he met and married the love of his life, Helen Allen, on August 22, 1942. He worked in the product control department of U.S. Rubber Company in Chicopee Falls. George was a noted prospector and collector of dinosaur tracks, having for a time one of the largest collections in the country. He was active as an actor in the Springfield Repertory Players, Longmeadow Community Players, and Holyoke Catholic Players. In later years, he came to share his wife's love of bird-watching. After retiring in 1974, he and Helen spent 7 years camping and birdwatching through every state but Hawaii, identifying over 600 life birds. In 2003, Helen entered the Kimball Farms Nursing Home in Lenox. Every day until her death in Dec. 2004 George spent hours at her side, caring for her and introducing her to other residents. Within days of Helen's death, George at 92 became a near-daily volunteer at Kimball Farms, sharing companionship, shameless puns, and his much-loved poetry with the residents and staff. His exceptional volunteer efforts were featured in several newspapers and a national magazine. At 96, George himself became a resident at Kimball Farms, but continued reaching out to others, making friends until the end. He leaves his three sons, George J. Jr. and his wife, Nancy, David A. and his wife, Kathy, Peter W. and his wife, Susan; six grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren; a brother-in-law; sister-in-law; nephews and nieces. The family would like to thank the staff at Kimball Farms for their excellent care and the gift of their friendship over the years. A memorial service will be held in the Spring.
Published in The Berkshire Eagle on Feb. 7, 2015
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