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Lee Kingsley

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Lee Kingsley Obituary
Lee Baxter Kingsley

1941 - 2015 WHITINGHAM Lee Baxter Kingsley, devoted son, fun-loving brother, faithful husband, committed father passed away Tuesday, March 3. Lee was a true outdoorsman an avid hunter, engaged fisherman, and general lover of the woods. This love of the out-of-doors may have been sparked by having been born and brought up on a dairy farm high on a hill more than a mile from the nearest neighbors. As he grew, his chores were mainly outdoors helping with all the various farm tasks and in his free time he was at liberty to roam acres of fields and forests. As with many a farm boy, he learned and appreciated the ways of nature and they became engraven in his heart. Lee was the second son of Arnold W. and Sylvia "Goldie" LaRock Kingsley, born to them at home on Jan. 11, 1941. He attended elementary school in Whitingham and was a member of the class of 1959, the last class to graduate from the old Jacksonville High School. During high school, Lee was an active member of Future Farmers of America and fulfilled its project requirement by raising chickens, both for eggs and for meat. It was under the auspices of FFA that he took a trip to Kansas City to attend their National Convention. A very vivid memory of that trip was his visit to some slaughter houses and a meat packing plant quite an eye opener for a young man from a small Vermont family farm where all the animals even the cows, pigs, and chickens were treated like pets. After high school Lee went to work for New England Power Service Company, where he became a very proficient lineman. The only drawback to this job was being based in Massachusetts. So when he was offered a position with Jacksonville Electric, he jumped at the opportunity and brought his young family back to Whitingham the family then consisting of his wife, Marianne "Tootsie" Howarth, and two children, son, Anthony and daughter, Julie. As Jacksonville Electric expanded, so did Lee's duties and he came to wear many hats - from lineman to engineer to meter reader to emergency repairman to customer service specialist. Through this work, he became known and appreciated by nearly everyone in town. With the help of a local carpenter Lee built a house on what is now Ginny Morse Road and there his family expanded to include a second son, Johnathan. A few years later when his marriage ended in divorce, Lee gained custody of his three young offspring and was an outstanding single parent. Lee was active in the Jacksonville Volunteer Fire Department, retiring in the rank of captain. He also served his town as a thoughtful selectman for a few terms. During his younger years Lee was quite a dare devil. Combining this trait with his love of horseback riding, he began breaking horses for riding at a neighbor's horse farm. Lee was often given the horses that no one else could manage. Lee was known as a practical joker and prankster. Family life, even to recent times, was greatly enlivened by his unique and creative pranks. His satisfaction at having pulled a good one on someone was evident in the twinkle in his eyes and the smirky grin on his face. For several years Lee went to Newfoundland and/or northern Maine on hunting trips with a group of local hunting buddies. More often than not he returned with deer, bear, or moose meat for his freezer. In early years his hunting was strictly local - for bear, deer, and raccoon. On Oct.1, 2004, Lee married his longtime companion and fishing buddy, Deborah Anderson. In the years they spent together, Lee and Debby both enjoyed their hours of fishing as well as going for drives and looking for wildlife. Lee was a reluctant traveler, but once convinced to go on a trip, he enjoyed their travels to various state parks and also to Florida to visit Deb's family. A very special trip was one they took with his brother Cleon and wife Shirley to see Mt. Rushmore, stopping along the way at Niagara Falls and visiting the power plant there. Both Lee and Deb loved having children and grandchildren around them. Extended family get-togethers meant a great deal to them too. Lee is survived by his wife, Debby; and also by his two sons, Anthony, of Brattleboro, and Johnathon and his wife, Diana, of Bennington; daughter, Julie of Half Moon Bay, Calif.; stepsons, Simon Anderson and wife, Doreen, of Warren, Vt., and Nicholas Anderson of Whitingham; his brother, Warren, of Chateaugay, N.Y.; and two sisters, Connie Burton of Guilford, and Sandra Kingsley of Wilmington. Additionally he leaves nine grandchildren and four great grandchildren. He was predeceased by his older brother, Cleon; and younger sister, Nancy Smith. A big thank you and expression of gratitude is sent to the caregivers who did such a wonderful job and were so loving in their care of Lee at home over the past few months. Lee was dearly loved and will be missed. For those wishing to help celebrate his life, please join the family during visiting hours Sunday afternoon, March 8, from 3 - 5 p.m. at COVEY AND ALLEN FUNERAL HOME, Main Street, Wilmington and/or at a memorial service to be held at the same location Monday, March 9, at 2 p.m. A reception will follow at The Roadhouse on Route 100 North in Wilmington. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be sent to Deerfield Valley Rescue, Wilmington, VT 05363.



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Published in Brattleboro Reformer on Mar. 7, 2015
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