WINCHENDON, Mass. - On Nov.18, 2013, Everett E. Tenney, 85, was reunited with the love of his life, Rita M. (Gilbert Connors) Tenney, who has been patiently waiting with her honey-do list since July 22, 2003.
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But Heaven's gain is the deepest loss for his five surviving children, his 13 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. In addition to his beloved wife, Everett was pre-deceased by one son, Joseph P. Connors, Jr., and his parents, Charles E., and Nellie (Dunchus) Tenney.
Like his father (and 400 years of Tenneys before them), Everett was a carpenter to his very soul. After serving two years in the U.S. Navy and another four in the Air Force, he spent his entire working life building homes, stores, office complexes, and hospitals.
But no nail was ever more lovingly hammered by his hand than those he put into the home he built for his family on half of his father's property. Once he enclosed the shell against the elements, he and Rita moved in and finished the house themselves, with five children under the age of 10 underfoot.
Everett was a proud lifelong member of The New England Carpenters Union. Even after he retired from Crowley construction in 1990, he and his hammer were almost always found at one or another of his children's homes, building or remodeling well into his 80s.
Everett was an avid golfer for many years, and with Rita, a bowler for decades. He participated in regional tournaments in both sports.
But his real passion was Winchendon's Little League baseball. Beginning as soon as he had a nephew old enough to play, he coached for decades as his sons and even his grandson passed through Winchendon uniforms. Even after his sons were grown and he retired from coaching, he gave private coaching to his granddaughters and their teammates on the softball field. He continued to be a fixture at Mariah's and Skyler's softball games right through their 2013 seasons.
Everett's passing has left a giant void in a lot of hearts, not the least of which are his surviving children and their spouses: Michael Connors of Fitchburg, Mass., David and Terry Connors of Mystic Conn., Judy and Rick Grehan of Jaffrey, Randy and Tracey Tenney of Winchendon, Mass., and Danny and Jaime Tenney of Rindge.
He also leaves behind 13 grandchildren: Derek, Shawn, Jacob and Zachary Connors, Aaron, Joshua, Benjamin and Reuven Grehan, and Cessalie, (little) Everett, Mariah, Alex and Skyler Tenney, as well as two great-grandchildren.
By his own request, there will be no funeral, but the family has planned a memorial service for Everett and Rita, who will be interred together, at the Veteran's Memorial Cemetery's chapel on Dec. 6, at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests donations to one of the following organizations most dear to Everett's heart: The American Legion Scholarship Fund, School St., Winchendon MA., the Maliska Scholarship Fund, 63 Booney, Steilacoom, WA, 98388 and The Winchendon 250th Anniversary Committee, 45 Academy St, Winchendon, MA.
The family would also like to thank the Gardner Visiting Nurses Association and Hospice.
Published in The Monadnock Ledger-Transcript on Nov. 21, 2013