CORNWALL - Allen Leo Quesnel, age 66 years, died in the arms of his loved ones on Thursday morning, February 7, 2013, at the St. Albans Road home of his daughter, Kim, in Swanton. Allen waged a courageous battle with male breast cancer since 2010.
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Born in Middlebury, Vt., on November 27, 1946, he was the son of the late Paul Leo and Ida Mae (Ryan) Quesnel. He attended schools in Middlebury and on August 9, 1969, was married to the love of his life, Martha Ann (Johnson), who survives him.
Allen faithfully served his country in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Viet Nam Era. He received several commendations and medals including the Viet Nam Service Medal, Viet Nam Campaign Medal, National Defense Service Medal and the Rifle Sharpshooter Badge. He was educated and trained in Infantry Organization, Communications and Crew Served Weapons, Individual Protective Measures and Operations Against Guerilla Units. He drove armored amphibious tanks in combat. Allen was a lifetime member of several post military organizations including the Disabled American Veterans, Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 926 in Bristol, American Legion, Post 26 in Richmond, Va., The Marine Corps League, Lake Country Detach 1085, Department of Vermont and the Disabled Veteran Hunting and Fresh Water Fishing.
A native of Middlebury, Allen and his wife lived in Cornwall, Vt. for 37 years. He was an avid outdoorsman, with a love of fishing, hunting, camping and kayaking. Allen was community-minded, never missing an opportunity to help others. He served on the Cornwall Board of Adjustments and was a lifelong active member of The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish in Middlebury. Allen was an incredibly hard worker, with a history as a mason, bricklayer and general contractor. He also delivered apples for Sunrise Orchards and ran his own maple sugaring and snowplowing businesses. Allen also assisted his wife in the daily operation of her day care and was known by the children as "Mr. Pancake Man." Always a comedian, his family and friends knew him by several other nicknames, including "Bugger," "Mr. Wing Ding" and "Robert McDonald." Allen and his wife later retired to Bracey, Va., in the Lake Gaston region. They were active members of the South Hill Community Memorial Health Center cancer support group.
He will always be remembered by many family and friends for his big heart, his incredible sense of humor and his love of laughing, which stayed with him until the very end.
He leaves the family that he adored: his wife of 43 years, Martha; two children, William James Quesnel of London, England, and Kim Quesnel Sweeney and husband Mark of Swanton; two grandchildren, Elijah (his camping buddy) and Samantha (the light of his life) Sweeney of Swanton; two brothers, Richard Quesnel and wife Janna of Michigan and Michael Quesnel Sr. of Cornwall; as well as a very large extended family and a wide network of close friends.
Funeral services and interment will be held and announced in the Spring in the Vermont Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Randolph Center, Vt.
Gifts in Allen's memory may be made to the Marine Corps League, Lake Country Detach 1085, PO Box 642, Bracey, VA 23919-0642; or to the Viet Nam Veterans of America, 8605 Cameron St., Suite 400, Silver Springs, MD 20910-3710.
Arrangements are under the direction of The Kidder Memorial Home, 89 Grand Ave., Swanton, VT 05488.
To offer private online condolences, please visit www.kiddermemorialhome.com.
Kidder Memorial Home
89 Grand Avenue Swanton, VT 05488
Published in Rutland Herald on Feb. 11, 2013