PITTSFORD - The Cadwell family announces the peaceful death of John Burditt Cadwell at his home on February 9, 2014, after a long illness.
John Burditt Cadwell was born June 6, 1921, in Florence, the only child of John Ashley Cadwell and Minnie Burditt Cadwell. He attended Pittsford High School, Vermont Academy and Middlebury College '44. He entered the military during World War II
and fought in the European Theater, receiving the Purple Heart
for injury in action in France in September of 1944.
After the war, he entered Cornell University where he received his degree in agriculture. While at Cornell, he met Mary Elizabeth Allen of Proctor, Vt., whom he married in 1947. Returning to the Burditt Farm in Pittsford, he soon discovered a greater affinity with people than with animals and a greater ability in financial planning than with farm machinery. Although he never left the farm, which was run by his uncle, Daniel Burditt, he turned his attention to sales.
Over the next 50 years, John Cadwell built a successful career in life insurance. He was known as skilled and honest. He was inspired by the belief that he was, as the term implies, insuring his clients against life's challenges. He was also a progressive conservative in a time when the term was not contradictory. He was an active member of his community. In Pittsford, among other positions, he served on the water commission, the library board, the school board, and was a deacon of the Congregational Church. In Proctor, he served on the board of the Proctor Bank. In Rutland, where he established his office in the Gryphon Building, he served on the arts council, the chamber of commerce and the hospital board. He was generous to many causes, including Middlebury College, Vermont Public Radio and the Vermont Community Trust. The Vermont Community Foundation graciously recognized John and Mary's commitment to their community in 2010.
John Cadwell welcomed friends near and far, those he knew in town and those he met during his education, career and many travels. His library was extensive - fiction, biography, history, the arts, sports and current events. He read the Rutland Herald and the New York Times every day. Other periodicals came and went, but he was never without the New Yorker. He loved a good discussion, yet followed the Vermont custom of listening more than speaking. He knew good values and was true to them, yet enjoyed all well-told stories, whether high or low.
He was a devoted husband to his wife, Mary, and a generous father to his six sons, Ashley of Middlebury, Vt., Steven of Concord, Mass., Michael of Columbus, Ohio, Jared of Waitsfield, Vt., Alden of Burlington, Vt., and Jason of Shelburne, Vt.
His wife and sons survive him, as do his sons' spouses, Louise Boyd Cadwell, Joseph Levine, Jane Murphy, Kathy Weeks Cadwell and Deb Sherrer. There are also eight grandchildren, John Alden, Christopher, Celia, Gus, Parker, Isaac, Katharine and Eliza, and one great-grandson, Asher. For all his intelligence, generosity and uncommon good sense, his family, friends and community are ever grateful.
The Cadwell family expresses its deep gratitude to the people of Pittsford for supporting John and Mary when they most needed it. In particular, the family thanks Melody Robinson, Julie Lonergan, Jayne Fjeld, Kim Moyer, Eric Bacon and Rob Kallen for their compassion, humor and devotion.
A memorial service will be held later this spring. In place of flowers, the family asks that a donation be made by check to The Cadwell Fund at the Vermont Community Foundation, 3 Court St., Middlebury, VT 05753.