MONTPELIER - Sandra Jean (Somers) Boardman, 78, passed away surrounded by her loving family on July 20, 2014.
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Born in Montpelier on July 12, 1936, Sandra was the daughter of Harold and Esther (Bliss) Somers, owners of Somers Hardware, an iconic business in the state's capital for many years. Her family ancestry in Vermont is a proud one, dating back more than five generations to Abdiel Bliss, a captain in the Revolutionary Army who was one of the founders of Calais, Vermont, in the late 1700s.
She graduated from Montpelier High School in 1954 and married her high school sweetheart, Douglas R. Boardman, on Feb. 8, 1955. In true fairy tale fashion, they were born on the same day, same year in different parts of Vermont and found each other at Montpelier High School. After graduation, Sandra had the first of many great adventures when she followed her new husband to the tiny Mediterranean island of Malta, where he was serving as a petty officer in the U.S. Navy. She would give birth to their first child in the naval hospital there.
In addition to raising five children, Sandra also worked as a customer service supervisor for Sears Roebuck and eventually moved on to a position with IBM as a data operations librarian, where she retired in 1987. She was heavily involved with various PTA and booster clubs, the Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts of America, and was one of the original soccer moms. Sandra and husband Doug were longtime season ticket holders for University of Vermont girls basketball and drove through many blizzards to support the team.
Sandra was well known for her knitting skills, her competitive spirit at cribbage and rummy, and enjoyed many sunny days at the family camp in South Hero in a lawn chair on the dock with a book in one hand and a glass of Chardonnay in the other. She loved to travel and made it to 48 of the 50 states and especially enjoyed visits to a daughter in Montana, which meant frequent hikes and horseback riding in Yellowstone Park. A son living near New York City insured that Sandra would see many Broadway plays as well as a concert with personal favorite Neil Diamond where she had to be restrained from throwing personal articles of clothing onto the stage. Above all, Sandra was devoted to her family and considered everyone her friend. No one ever left the Boardman household with an empty stomach. Hundreds of her Tupperware containers are no doubt still located in kitchens around the state.
She is survived by her husband of many years, Douglas R. Boardman; her children and their partners: Doug Jr. and Jacqueline Gale, of Johnson, Vermont, Jeff and Joe Perry, of Ulster Park, New York, Pam and Willie Burkhardt, of Emigrant, Montana, Randy and Sharon Boardman, of Jericho, Vermont, Stephanie and Pete Richardson, of Barre, Vermont; grandchildren Lucas Richardson, Evelyn and Caleb Boardman, Cole and Maggie Burkhardt; and Sandra's sister Linda Bongiolatti and her two children, Jill Murray and Amy Bongiolatti; longtime friends Bill and Pearl Bugbee; and many other nieces and nephews, as well as many close personal friends and family around the United States.
A public viewing and funeral service will be held on Friday, July 25, at the Guare and Sons/Barber & Lanier Funeral Home, 30 School St. in Montpelier. The viewing will be from noon to 1 p.m., and the service will begin at 1 p.m., followed by interment at the Green Mount Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the
, 312 Hurricane Lane, Williston, VT 05495 or the American Diabetes Foundation at www.diabetes.org/donate, or a
Guare & Sons Funeral Home - Montpelier
30 School Street
Montpelier, VT 05602
Published in Times Argus from July 22 to July 23, 2014