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KEITH L. HALL - NEW HAVEN - Keith L. Hall, 78, died due to complications of kidney failure on Sunday, Aug. 28, 2011, at the White River Veterans Hospital in the presence of his loving family. He was born on Feb. 2, 1933, in Rumford, ME, the second son of Louis Ronello Hall and Lois Pearl (Small) Hall. He grew up in Andover, ME and graduated from Andover High School. He was an athlete and ran track and field, played baseball and was on the ski team. After high school he joined the Air Force. As part of the Korean Conflict, he was stationed in England where he met his first wife, Rosemarie Crocker, who died in 1964. Using the G.I. Bill of Rights, he went to school and became the first person in his family to get a college degree - a Bachelor's degree in Education at the University of Maine in Farmington. He went on to get a Master's degree in Education at the University of Maine in Orono. In 1965 he met and married Frances Kingsbury and they were married for 46 years until his death. He earned a second Master's Degree from the University of North Carolina and worked toward his doctoral degree through the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He was a teaching principal at Swanville Elementary School in Swanville, ME; Elm Hill School in Springfield; and was supervising principal at State Street School in Windsor. In 1968 he moved to Bristol where he served as the assistant super-intendent of schools and then the superintendent of schools at Addison Northeast Supervisory Union from 1969–1986. He was the president of the Vermont Superintendent's Association in 1986. After retiring as a Vermont educator, he moved back to Maine where he did a series of interim superintendencies around the state. Throughout his career as an educator, he was a champion for students – putting the needs of students first and working tirelessly to strengthen the relationship between teacher and student. He was an amateur oil painter who liked painting seascapes. As a jack-of-all trades, he built his own houses, additions, garages, woodsheds and did his own plumbing, electrical, stone masonry and car repairs. He raised chickens, pigs, turkeys and kept a big vegetable garden. His other interests included coin collecting, rock collecting and buying old cars to fix up as well as fishing and hunting. During the 1970s, he was a regular in the Bristol 4th of July parade with his friend, Larry Diette, as a 'Horribles' act. As the first Democrat in his family, he was very politically involved with the Democratic Party his whole adult life. He was a select board member in Swanville, ME and in Frankfort, ME. He was a member of the Searsport, ME Lion's Club and the Bristol Rotary Club and Bristol Lion's Club. He became a Mason when he was 21 years old in Maine and became a Shriner through the Scottish Rite in Vermont. Exercising his right to freedom of speech on a regular basis, he was a prolific writer of letters to the editor. After retirement he went on to become a Shriner clown. He did wood carving, making canes and other wood sculptures, that he sold locally. He served on the ACCAG board and was a member of the John Graham Shelter board. He served as the New Haven Zoning Board Administrator and later was chair of the select board in New Haven. In the last year and a half of his life he worked on writing his memoir – a lifelong dream based on the premise 'Where did I get my education?' rooted in his belief that his true education was from life, not from what he learned in colleges. Each chapter chronicled a person or event that inspired him and his life. A week and a half before his death he finished Chapters 40 and 41 of this project. He was well-loved and well-known by many people; he was a hero to many people. He lived his life to the beat of his own drum and was unafraid to do the right thing or to do something unusual or in the realm of the unknown if a situation called for it. His love of a good story, his sense of humor and sense of fun brightened many people's lives as he had an undying optimism and unmatched zest for life. He was predeceased by his mother, his father and his older brother, Louis Russell Hall. He is survived by his wife, Frances, of New Haven; his daughters, Carole Hall of New Haven, Maggie Hall and her son, James, of Lincoln and Kathy Hall and her husband, Dan Browdy, and daughters, Anna and Caroline, of Middlebury; five adult grandchildren (born to daughter, Carole) and nine great-grandchildren, Rebekah DiGavero and her husband, Jason, of North Carolina and her children, Jacob and Abigail; Keri Williams and her husband, Delano, of North Carolina and her children, Keimo, Amias, Denzel, Kayla and Brandon; Annie Denny of Bristol and her children, Jordan and MacKenzie; Matt Williams and his wife, Gracie, of Colorado; and Jon Williams and his fiancee, Vanessa Hayes, of Tennessee. He is also survived by his younger brothers, Herschel Hall and his wife, Joy, of Massachusetts and Stephen Hall and his wife, Donna, of Georgia; and by many nieces and nephews and great-nieces and nephews. Calling hours will be at Brown–McClay Funeral Home in Bristol on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2011, from 5 to 8 p.m., which will include a Masonic service at 7 p.m. A memorial service will be held at St. Stephen's Church in Middlebury on Friday, Sept. 9, 2011, at 11 a.m. with a reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations for a scholarship fund in Keith Hall's memory can be sent to: Addison Northeast Supervisory Union, c/o Kristin Cram, 15 Orchard Terrace, Suite 10, Bristol, VT 05443. Please reference Keith Hall on memo. The fund is being set up in Keith Hall's name to benefit graduates of Mt. Abe.
Funeral Home
Brown-McClay Funeral Homes Inc.
4 South Street
Bristol, VT 05443
(802) 453-2301
Published in The Burlington Free Press on Sept. 1, 2011
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