Dennis Arthur Thatcher, 61, Passed away August 27, 2019 after a three (3) year fight with cancer. Born on September 17, 1959 in Northampton, MA.
He is survived by his wife of 40 years, Theresa Anne (Snape) Thatcher. His Sisters and husbands: Denise (Thatcher) Sessions & Jay; Arleen (Thatcher) Snape and Frank. Also Aunts, Uncle, Nieces, nephews and great nephews and nieces. He is also survived by his Fire Department Family and friends.
He was predeceased by his daughter Jennifer Marie (Thatcher) Slater (2015), his parents Arthur Thatcher (2010) and Virginia (Robbins) Thatcher (1997) his brothers Eugene Thatcher (2012) and Charles Thatcher (2009).
He started Grammar school in the one room schoolhouse in Plainfield. When that closed, he went to Sanderson Academy in Ashfield to finish grammar school. He graduated from Mohawk Trail Regional High School in Buckland MA in 1975.
Dennis was involved in many things but his love was the Family Dairy Farm, later a Beef Farm, Fire Department and EMT, and of course he loved Sugaring - Maple syrup production and last but not least he loved working with wood. When he was younger, he worked with is Great Uncle building houses in Dalton. He loved to use his lathe and turn pens and he was learning to make bowls. When his father sold off the Dairy cows, he took the General Contractor license test and passed.. After his brother Eugene died, he took on the Beef operation at the Farm, as well. He also worked at the Cummington Snow Basin with Bernie & Denny Forgea. One of his jobs was to groom the mountain every night so that skiers could use the mountain the next day.
He was a member of the Plainfield Fire Department for 43 years. He became a Volunteer Firefighter in 1976. He was only 18. He became a National Certified EMT in 1978. He was an EMT for 41 years. He became an officer in 1982 and became the Fire Chief in 1984 at the age of 27 years old. When he was sworn in he became one of the youngest Fire Chiefs in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. He was Fire Chief for 35 years. As Chief, he was responsible for getting and handling many grants that paid for new fire trucks, Ambulance, training and Educational equipment, and protective gear for the Firefighters. He established having a Class II Ambulance in town for quicker response for medical calls when Cummington Ambulance became part of the Highland Ambulance out of Goshen. But the one thing he was the most proud of was the building of a brand new Public Safety Complex.
He was a former member of the Plainfield Congregational Church, Plainfield Grange, Massachusetts Grange, and the National Grange.
Services will be held on September 8 at the Plainfield Congregational Church, 356 West Main Street, Plainfield at 3:00 PM. The Committal Burial Service at the Plainfield Hilltop Cemetery on North Central Street will follow the service. A reception will follow after that, at the Plainfield Safety Complex, 38 North Central Street.
Donations may be made to: Plainfield Volunteer Firefighters Assn. (PVFA) c/o Andy Stevens, 815 West Main Street, Plainfield MA 01070.
Smith-Kelleher Funeral Home of Shelburne Falls is assisting the family. Please visit www.smithkelleherfuneralhome.com
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