Dean J. Magarian

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  • "Val,Emily,Laura, & Mitch, The news of Dean's death came as..."
    - Maggie Levesque
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MANCHESTER - Dean James Magarian, 53, a resident of Seminary Avenue in Manchester, passed away Friday, November 16, 2012, at his home, surrounded by his loving family. Dean was born in Newton, Massachusetts, on December 28, 1958, the son of Daniel and Frances (Gendall) Magarian. It's always tough to sum up a hero in a few words. Dean was a great role model who valued, above all, God and family. He was deeply devoted to his wife and children.

He was educated in the Lexington, Massachusetts, public schools, graduating from high school in 1976. Dean then went on to receive his bachelor's degree in early childhood education, his master's degree in school administration and a second master's in literacy and special education.

He loved teaching kids to read and would spend many extra hours tutoring kids before and after school. Dean began his teaching career at the Christian Center Elementary School in Lexington, Massachusetts, teaching kindergarten. He then spent 17 years serving as principal of Willard Middle School in Sanford, Maine, and Flood Brook Elementary School in Londonderry, Vermont. After a successful administrative career, Dean returned to his real passion and love as an early childhood educator at the Sunderland Elementary School, where he taught first grade up until the time of his death.

Dean was a member of Christ Our Savior Parish St. Paul Roman Catholic Church in Manchester, where he taught youth ministries, as he had in Sanford, Maine. He inspired many young people to become closer to God. Dean enjoyed putting his skilled carpentry hands to work building for his family and the benefit of others. He enjoyed hiking on the trails behind Burr & Burton Academy. He was very active and involved in BBA sports programs and was a constant supporter of their teams. The BBA Varsity Football team (which went to the semi-finals) and the Varsity Boys Soccer Team (State Champions) dedicated their seasons to him. BBA's Performing Arts dedicated the school play to Dean.

Dean annually fundraised and took his first graders on an overnight trip to Boston with "Urban Orienteering" as the theme, teaching his students to navigate subway systems and learning about historical points of interest. Dean was an avid Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots fan. He loved a wide variety of music, especially Christian music, and cherished time spent with his family, his dog and nature. First graders talk of their love of reading because of the way he read the BFG by Roald Dahl in his animated voices and goofy hats. His wife will forever love him, his son has dedicated his life to becoming the man his father is and his daughters plan to raise their children through the example of their father. In the end, when you look at the measure of a life and leaving the world a better place, Dean gets an A+

Dean is survived by his wife and soul mate, Valerie Magarian of Manchester; his son, Mitch Magarian of Manchester; his daughters, Emily Magarian Thomas and her husband Christopher of Burlington, Vermont, and Laura Magarian of Burlington, Vermont; his mother of Acadia, Florida; his brother, Robert Magarian and his wife Lorraine of Chelmsford, Massachusetts; several nieces and nephews; and his dog, Riley. He was preceded in death by his father, Daniel Magarian.

At the request of the family, a private memorial Mass will be celebrated at Christ Our Savior Parish, St. Paul Roman Catholic Church in Manchester. A celebration of the life of Dean James Magarian will be held at the Sunderland Elementary School December 22, 2012, from 1-4 p.m. If so inclined, feel free to bring a memory or memento to participate in the celebration. Memorial gifts may be made in Dean's memory to the Sunderland Elementary School to benefit kids and education, c/o Brewster & Shea Funeral Service, PO Box 885, Manchester Center, VT 05255. To send the family personal email condolences, please visit

The family has entrusted arrangements to the care of Brewster and Shea Funeral Home, 34 Park Place, Manchester Center, Vermont.
Published in Rutland Herald on Nov. 19, 2012