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JOHN LITTLEFIELD HANDY JR.

JOHN LITTLEFIELD HANDY JR. - HUNTINGTON - John "Jack" Littlefield Handy Jr., of Huntington, died at The Arbors in Shelburne on Dec. 14, 2012, at the age of 92. Born Aug. 14, 1920, to John L. Handy Sr. and Virginia Seiberling Handy, Jack grew up in Barnstable, Mass. He received his education at the Diller-Quayle School of Music, Milton Academy, and Harvard, Columbia and Brown Universities. Jack enlisted in the 10th Mountain Infantry Division Ski Troops during W.W.II, and took part in the Kiska landing and occupation. After graduating from Officer Candidate School, he was sent to Japan as a lieutenant, continuing his work there as a civilian after the war ended. He met his future wife, Jane, in the Japanese Alps where she worked for the Red Cross. They were married in Tokyo and honeymooned on a hut-to-hut ski trip in the mountains. Jack taught English at the Waring Ranch School in New Mexico, the University of Kansas, Middlebury and Bennington Colleges, and was the director of admissions at Middlebury and Bennington. He moonlighted as a college counselor at the Hoosac School in New York. In 1964, Jack became headmaster of the Stowe School, developing a curriculum that included the arts, outdoor education and a non-resident term. He taught writing and poetry classes in the community, and furthered his interests in music, acting and wilderness survival. He hosted X-C ski races and orienteering events. When Jack retired from the school, students and faculty built him a sailboat as a farewell gift. Jack sailed and rowed his 16' Peapod over hundreds of miles along the New England seacoast and on Lake Champlain. Retirement in Huntington found Jack building with fieldstones, volunteering for a Burlington advocacy center, teaching English, serving on various boards and committees, scouting and cutting a section of the Catamount Trail, collecting skis for schools, and camping in all seasons accompanied by a devoted dog. Despite the Alzheimer's that slowly stole Jack's artistry with words, he continued to hike, jog, saw wood, ski, sail and play the piano until he was 89. The Handy family is grateful for the wonderful people who affectionately guided Jack through his last years. His dynamic personality never lost its sparkle. He captured the humor in life and encouraged us to look at things in a different light. Jack was preceded in death by his wife, Jane Martin Handy in 2007. He is survived by his brother, Ned Handy of Massachusetts; sisters, Maize Bausch of Vermont, and Sylvia Bowman of Washington; daughters, Amy and Myra Handy of Vermont, Jinky Handy of Alaska, Nell Griffin of New Hampshire, and Caroline Heffron of New York; grandchildren, Leif, Riser, and Chaska Richardson, Juniper Krog, August and Noah Brautigam, Damon and Thom Griffin, and Rebecca and Teja Clayman; great-grandchildren, Asa, Benjamin and Carmen Richardson, Kai, Michael and Coral Krog, and Parker Brautigam; along with many other dear friends and family. Jack's friends are welcome to attend an informal celebration of his life at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 25, 2013, at Jubilee Farm, 4582 Main Rd., Huntington Center. Donations in Jack's memory may be made to the Burlington Vermont Humane Society, the Vermont Catamount Trail Association, or the Apprenticeshop in Rockland, Maine.


Published in The Burlington Free Press on Apr. 28, 2013
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