BRIDGEWATER, N.J. - Sally J. Roberts, longtime owner of The Monadnock Inn in Jaffrey, and dedicated community servant to many local organizations, died Saturday morning, March 22 in the Bridgewater Care and Rehabilitation Center in Bridgewater, N.J. She was 84.
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Sally Johnson was born Nov. 13, 1929 in Cleveland, Ohio, the daughter of Helen Mary Gray Shaw and Clinton Johnson. She grew up in Canton, Ohio. She attended Sargent College at Boston University, where she graduated in 1951 with a degree in physical education.
In 1953, Sally married Herbert A. Roberts, a district manager for Donahue Sales and Talon Zippers. Their first house was in Boxford, Mass., where Sally also taught for a while. In 1962, they bought a house in Neshanic Station, N.J. where they raised two daughters and a son, and Sally taught physical education in Branchburg Central School. While in New Jersey, Sally was a Girl Scout leader, a Cub Scout leader, and member of the Branchburg Women's Club and Gourmet Group.
In 1977, Sally and Herb bought The Monadnock Inn, an 1870 building in the Jaffrey Center Historic District. Herb died in 1981.
To celebrate her 50 birthday, Sally took an eight day Outward Bound sailing expedition in the Florida Keys. At the 100 year celebration of Sargent College in 1981, Sally was an honored recipient of the Sargent Spirit Centennial Award, given for exemplifying the spirit of Sargent College and for providing valued service to her community.
Last summer, the Jaffrey Center Village Improvement Society (JCVIS) and the Monadnock Inn held a celebration in honor of Sally Roberts's 36 years of service to the Jaffrey community as owner and operator of the Monadnock Inn during the years 1977 to 2001, and as volunteer extraordinaire for the Jaffrey Center Village Improvement Society (JCVIS), the Jaffrey Historical Society, the Monadnock Garden Club, the Thorndike Club and others. She was a member of All Saints Episcopal Church in Peterborough and served on their Altar Guild. She also supported the First Church in Jaffrey.
Sally recalled last August the many events she and her close friend Mary Robinson Batiste Payson held at the Inn to benefit the Village Improvement Society and its causes. "We'd cook all day on Monday, go home, get dressed, then entertain all evening. I don't know how we did it, but we had great fun."
"The first event (1984) was for the windows in the 1775 Meetinghouse." It raised $8,000. Sally and Mary also held a pig roast fundraiser, five annual Robert Burns Dinners, a Vaudeville Show, a Village Tea, a New England Clam Bake, and four international dinners featuring Turkish, Brazilian, French and Greek cuisine. The events raised thousands of dollars to help restore and enhance the village.
Sally was a spirited, fun-loving and generous woman who loved gardening, being active outdoors, cooking and entertaining. She was devoted to her family, her community, and the many friends she made throughout her lifetime.
Sally is survived by her daughter, Kim Roberts and husband, John Buba, of Marblehead, Mass., daughter, Robin Roberts Bateman, of Branchburg, N.J., son William J. Roberts, of Jacksonville, Fla., sister Linda Sue Babcock, of Savannah, Ga., grandchildren Raymond Henry Bateman III, Amy Roberts Bateman, Camilla Roberts Buba and Deanna Roberts Buba, and great grandchildren Lily and Luke Neumann.
A memorial service will be held at All Saints Episcopal Church in Peterborough on Saturday, Aug. 2, 2014 at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Jaffrey Center VIS, P.O. Box 722, Jaffrey N.H. 03452-0722. Memories of Sally can be shared at http://www.forevermissed.com/sally-johnson-roberts.
Published in The Monadnock Ledger-Transcript on Apr. 8, 2014