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Dr. Gilles A. Marchand

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Dr.  Gilles A. Marchand Obituary
Marchand, Dr. Gilles A.
Dr. Gilles A. Marchand, passed away on Friday, March 9, 2018 at the age of 81. Born in Westmore, Vermont, a small rural town, he and his family soon moved to Taftville, Connecticut where the textile mills offered opportunity. In 1952, Gil graduated from Norwich Free Academy at only 15. Hard working and patriotic, Gil enlisted in the U.S. Army during the Korean conflict. He served as a paratrooper and made numerous airplane jumps in Alaska and Germany.
Gilles had no idea that his life would soon take a different course when he met the love of his life, Valerie J. Ford while on a day trip to Crescent Beach. Although it was "love at first sight," it took him a week to ask Valerie out for their first date. They quickly became a couple. Gil utilized the G.I. Bill when he was accepted at University of Connecticut. He managed to complete his pre-medical studies in only three years, during which he was appointed a University Scholar and became a member of the national scientific society, Sigma Xi.
Valerie and Gil were married in the spring of 1960. With her continued unwavering support, Gilles graduated from Jefferson Medical School in Philadelphia. He completed his internship at Hartford Hospital along with a residency of one year of anesthesiology and a three-year residency of OBGYN. Gilles entered a partnership with Dr. H.R. Kuhn and Dr. Frank Marx in New London. Soon, Dr. Marchand became a diplomat of the National Board of Medical Examiners and a Junior Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. From 1981-1985, he was also Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital.
Gracious and giving, Dr. Marchand was loved by his patients. Many will remember him visiting after hours and going far beyond the call. The endless hours of work, however, didn't impede his ability to enjoy his own family. Valerie and Gilles had three children; Denise, Gilles Jr. (Chip), and MaryBeth. Avid golfer, tennis player, sailor, and skier, Gilles enjoyed sharing his passions with his wife and children. He thoroughly enjoyed times spent together sailing on the Thames River. In addition, skiing at Magic Mountain in Vermont was a favorite of the Marchand family. Gilles was known to tear up the slopes and dance through the moguls. Something else he passed on to his children was a love of reading. In fact, from the age of three, Gilles never went anywhere without a book.
Among the many activities and demands of work, Gilles also coached little league baseball and volunteered as a physician for the Waterford Lancer's football team. He cared deeply for his community and was elected into Waterford's Representative Town Meeting. Forever serving others, Gilles was selfish on one account: his love for The Red Sox and UCONN Girls' Basketball Team. Dr. Gil was known to have brought his snazzy transistor radio into patients' delivery rooms in order to keep track of a good game. Dr. Marchand's life was dedicated to his family, friends and patients and he will be sorely missed. "Not a finer man alive than Gil."
As time moved on, Dr. Marchand became a grandfather, and his competitive nature for card playing and board games was passed on to his grandchildren. He especially loved playing cribbage and monopoly with them, along with unending ping-pong games. After retirement, Gilles and Valerie would travel to Fripp Island, South Carolina where they enjoyed golf, walks on the beach and visits from family and friends. In addition to his grandchildren, Gil was an animal lover. He enjoyed playing with the five "grand-dogs" that brought him many laughs, especially his partner in crime, Scout.
Dr. Marchand is survived by his loving wife of fifty-eight years. He was the loving son of Donat and Blanche Marchand, predeceased by his cherished older sister, Ruth Wickham and survived by brothers
Donat (Jan) Marchand of Greenwich, CT and Chuck (Diane) Marchand of Virginia. He is also survived by his loving children, Denise Lancaster (Michael) of Blufton, SC, Gilles Marchand Jr. (Chip) of Guilford, CT and MaryBeth Marchand of Old Saybrook, CT and his five grandchildren, Emily, James, Matthew, Timothy, and Jane. Gilles will also be missed by his nieces, nephews, and long-time neighbors and friends.
Calling hours will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 15th, at the Thomas L. Neilan & Sons East Lyme Funeral Home, 48 Grand Street, Niantic. A memorial mass will assemble at 11:00 a.m. Friday, March 16th at St. Agnes Church located on 386-3 Main Street, East Lyme.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Gil's memory may be made to the donor's choice in honor his joy for reading – Waterford Public Library, his continuous pursuit of knowledge – Waterford High School Scholarship Fund, or his love of animals - the Waterford-East Lyme Animal Shelte
Published in The New Haven Register on Mar. 13, 2018
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