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JEAN PIERRE COUTU - ESSEX JUNCTION - Jean Pierre Coutu passed away on June 4, 2014, in the Vermont Respite House. He was born in Newport, Vt., Nov. 4, 1934, the seventh and youngest child of Octavien and Alexandrina Roberge Coutu. He grew up and attended school in Westfield and graduated from Newport Center High School in 1952. The summer after he completed his junior year of high school, he helped to build the parish hall in Troy and during his senior year he lived and worked on the Briggs family farm, milking cows morning and night. After graduation, he worked for the State of Vermont collecting information for topographical maps. He also worked at the bobbin mill in Westfield and the cheese factory in Troy. He moved to Burlington in 1952 and worked for Oakman Electric, and in February of 1953, joined the Vermont Air National Guard, becoming a fulltime employee in July, 1954, where he began as an aircraft mechanic. From 1973 to 1975 he worked in the hydraulic shop and then moved to maintenance where he later became supervisor in charge of scheduling the flying and maintenance of the aircraft, retiring as a Chief Master Sergeant after 42 years. Soon after his retirement he delivered the Essex Reporter for five years, and six months into retirement, took a job at St. Michael's College for twelve years; at the same time working for an inventory company which he did until his health became an issue. Jean enjoyed watching all spectator sports and over the years was active in bowling, ice fishing, deer hunting and building and flying remote controlled airplanes. He enjoyed board games, card games with family and friends, puzzles and the daily Sudoku. When the boys were young, he coached and refereed Little League and Babe Ruth and helped with the Boy Scouts. He was a man of many talents. He could build or fix just about anything. He traveled to or through 49 of the 50 states, including Alaska, as well as and PEI, Aruba, and remote parts of Canada. On Aug. 16, 1958, he married Joyce Thompson. Together they raised six children. He was predeceased by his parents; his brother, Marcel; his sisters, Cecile Beaulieu and Yvette Tousley; his brothers-in-law, Philippe Beaulieu, Leon Royce Magnant, Ernest Tousley and Donald Jewett; and his sister-in-law, Gloria Allen. He is survived by his wife, Joyce; and their children: Kathryn Bombard and her husband, Sherman, and their children, Jason, Ethan, and Heather, Peter Coutu, Jeffrey Coutu, Dana Coutu and his wife, Cheryl, Andrew Coutu and his wife, Laurie, and their children, Courtney Moore, Shelby and Ashley, and David Coutu and his wife, Amy, and their children, Monique and Charlotte. He is also survived by Courtney's husband, Thomas Moore and their daughter, his only greatgrandchild, Ivory; three sisters, Sister Patrice Coutu of Techny, Ill., Therese Magnant of Essex, and Madeline Lister of Essex Junction; a sister-in-law, Shirley Jewett of Richford, Vt.; as well as several nieces and nephews. Visiting hours will be at the Ready Funeral & Cremation Service Mountain View Chapel, 68 Pinecrest Dr., Essex Junction, on Monday, June 9, 2014, from 5 to 7 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Tuesday, June 10, 2014, at 11 a.m. in St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Essex Junction. Burial will follow on Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. at the Vermont Veteran's Memorial Cemetery in Randolph. Special thanks to the staff at Champlain Valley Hematology Oncology. FAHC, Baird 4 and the Vermont Respite House, as well as Dr. Newman, Dr. Fitzgerald, Dr. Haliburton and Dr. Boyd. To send online condolences to the family please visit Memorial gifts may be made to the Cancer, Heart or Parkinson's foundations, as well as Holy Family-St. Lawrence Catholic Church or an organization of your choice.

Published in The Burlington Free Press on June 6, 2014
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