March 23, 1919, to June 9, 2013
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CHELSEA - John A. Bellefeuille, a longtime resident of Chelsea, Vt., and Georgetown, Mass., passed away on Sunday, June 9, 2013, at Lawrence General Hospital, Lawrence, Mass., after a short illness.
He was born March 23, 1919, in Haverhill, Mass., the son of Joseph and Marie (Nolin) Bellefeuille. He was the youngest of four children. He was raised in Tunbridge, Vt., and worked in Vermont for many years as electrician, carpenter, plumber and owned a television service and repair business. During World War II, he served in the U.S. Navy. In 1959, he moved to Georgetown, Mass. While living in Georgetown, he was employed by Western Electric, now Alcatel-Lucent, for many years until his retirement in 1981. Upon retirement, he returned to Chelsea, Vt.
In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his wife of 65 years, Shirley M. Bellefeuille; a sister, Madeline; and two brothers, Claude and Leo. He is survived by his children, Joseph and his wife, Carolyn, of West Boxford, Mass., Donald and his wife, Margaret, of Haverhill, Mass., Judith Worrall and her husband, William, of Georgetown, Mass., and Steven, of Chelsea, Vt., and his friend Beth Plante, of East Montpelier, and Jeffrey Hedberg, whom John thought of as a son, of Johannesburg, South Africa. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren. Of the 15 great-grandchildren, there are four sets of twins. A sister-in-law and several nieces and nephews survive him, as well.
John gave much to his communities. After retiring from Western Electric, he continued to serve on the Georgetown Board of Health for several years. He was the health officer in Chelsea and Tunbridge for several years. He also served on the Washington Electric Co-op board of directors. In 2005, the Northeast Association of Electric Cooperatives honored John with its Sen. George D. Aiken Award given annually to honor lifetime achievements on behalf of rural electric cooperatives. He was particularly proud of being given the award by the late Sen. Aiken's wife, Lola. He very much enjoyed tutoring adults and out-of-school youths in his retirement.
While working at Western Electric as an electronics technician, he earned a degree in electrical engineering from Lowell Technological Institute. This achievement was rewarded with a promotion to associate engineer. He ultimately was promoted to senior engineer. By the time he retired, he was a licensed professional engineer and held a master electrician license.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in his memory may be made to Central Vermont Adult Basic Education, 46 Washington St., Suite 100, Barre, VT 05641. A memorial service will be held at a later date.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Boardway & Cilley Funeral Home in Chelsea, Vt. A private message of sympathy for the family can be shared at www.boardwayandcilley.com.
Published in Times Argus on June 18, 2013