Roger Hilsman
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Lyme - We are saddened to announce that our father, Roger Hilsman, 94, passed away peacefully on Feb. 23, 2014, surrounded by our mother and our family. Our father was a loving and devoted father and husband. He served our country as a soldier, statesman, and scholar in times of great peril for our nation, during World War II, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Vietnam War. He was formed in the crucible of war as a young man fighting in Burma during World War II. He was a man of ideals and actions. We are proud of his service to our nation and his courage in battle and his courage in opposing the escalation of the Vietnam War. He fought in war and served in high office, yet his greatest joy was to be surrounded by our mother, the love of his life, his children and grandchildren, whether driving his tractor, cooking Chinese food, or singing old family songs together.

He is survived by his wife, Eleanor; his daughters, Amy and Sarah; his sons, Hoyt and Ashby; and six grandchildren.

He will be buried at in Arlington National Cemetery.

A time for the service has not yet been scheduled.

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Published in The Day on Mar. 4, 2014.
Memories & Condolences
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14 entries
October 23, 2017
I so enjoyed our foreign policy course at Columbia spring semester 1968. Fond memories of our small gathering at the Cathedral basement in April. Appreciate your government service over the years and guidance as a teacher. My condolences to all of your family. May you Rest In Peace.
Ken Maass
March 12, 2014
Roger was a great neighbor in Lyme. Wehad many impromptu political conversations on the road, as well as more formal Democrat talks and events at their house, and I will remember his energy and strong opinions on a wide range of subjects!

Hope you will stay in touch when you come to Lyme
Tina West
March 11, 2014
I am devastated. Roger is my cousin, and I have known him all my life. Not as a war hero, or foreign policy expert, or friend of presidents – but as enthusiastic, loving, generous, hospitable, larger than life. He went out of his way to visit us in UWisconsin student housing during the Vietnam war (there were protests), he opened the Washington house and New York apartment to us many times, he exuberantly hosted wonderful Chinese dinners at a little restaurant upstairs on Broadway – ordering for everyone, telling us how to eat. He and Eleanor introduced us to so many things we'ed never have known. His death, at 94, was not unexpected, but I've found myself crying all day. Brightness has gone out of the sky, and I know it has for you – Hoyt, Ashby, Amy, Sarah. What a gift that you had him as a father. Eleanor, I love you. My thoughts are with you through these difficult days.
Conoly Hester
March 11, 2014
Dear Mrs. Hilsman, Hoyt, Amy , Ashby and Sarah.
A loss for all of us. I remember our days at Leland Street with great fondness . Please accept my condolences.
PS would you please mail me your contact details at I would like to call and speak with Mrs. Hilsman.
Gopalan Nair
March 9, 2014
Please accept my condolences. As a decendant of a Hillsman family member, I am proud to claim a relationship.

As a law student at Vanderbilt, I met Roger when he delivered a lecture on Vietnam in the early 1960's. The validity of the opinions he voiced was established during my service in Vietnam in 1965 as a US Marine.

As an Assistant United States Attorney, I met Ashby at a seminar on bank fraud at Main Justice in Washington, so my interest in the surviving family has a personal facet.

Roger was a fine man and a gifted one as well. He will be sorely missed.
William Warren
March 5, 2014
Thank you all for your messages. Granddaddy was a great man and will be missed but not forgotten. He will continue to be an inspiration to me and others who had the privilege of knowing him. Soldier, Scholar, and Statesman.
Will Hilsman
March 5, 2014
Some of my favorite childhood memories where the times spent at your home. My sincerest condolences to the Hilsman Family.
Phoebe Sussler-Pilj
March 4, 2014
Our sincerest condolences to the Hilsman family. So sorry for your loss.
Diane & Warren Bonaccorsi/Cross
March 4, 2014
My condolences to the Hilsmans. I enjoyed Mr. Hilsman's wisdom and stories. The world is a poorer place for his passing.
Cynthia Lahm
March 4, 2014
Roger Hilsman was a great, good man. I am the better for having met him. I remember at least one superb one-liner he zapped me with at the dinner table the night we first met. He is an important American historian and I hope his works are read and remembered. In short, Roger was a serious fellow who endured much suffering the war. Withal he maintained a good sense of humor, was generous and very dedicated to his family. My condolences to the Hilsman family.
Franklin Crawford
March 4, 2014
My sincerest condolences to the Hilsman Family.

I met Roger only once--at Connecticut College, one evening at a lecture--we both sat down, almost simultaneously, side by side---he was
quite gentlemanly and introduced himself, "Roger Hilsman," and I replied, somewhat astonished,
"Matt Hillsman, so pleased to meet you sir!" Quite the coincidence, I always thought, and one special meeting of a fine person, I'll always fondly remember.
Matt Hillsman
March 4, 2014
He was one of my favorite Professors at Columbia. I am sorry for your loss.
Michael Satti
March 4, 2014
My sincere condolences to the Hilsman family. I met Roger only twice, but after our meetings, I have purchased and read his books/writings, and have the most respect for this hero !!..He served his country well, and hope history remembers all of his contributions to our nation.
Jaime Perona
Stonington, CT.
March 4, 2014
A true American Hero. My condolences and prayers to and for the Family.
Jim Spellman
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