Chief Roger G. Belhumeur, 67
AUBURN - Roger G. Belhumeur, 67, of 3 White Terrace passed away early Sunday morning May 22, 2016 after a long and courageous 16 year battle with cancer. He leaves behind his wife of 42 years, Marion (Robinson) Belhumeur. Roger was born in Woonsocket, RI June 28, 1948 son of Jeanne (Boucher) Belhumeur and the late Maurice Belhumeur. Roger was also predeceased by his sister, Linda Belhumeur.
In addition to his wife and mother, Roger is survived by his three children: Amy J. Belhumeur of North Oxford, MA; Matthew R. Belhumeur and his wife Elizabeth of Paxton, MA, and Mary Rose Johnson and her husband Nicholas of Auburn. Roger is also survived by his two brothers Dennis Belhumeur and Michael Belhumeur, both of Auburn, MA. Roger also leaves behind his three grandchildren Jacob Johnson, Brady Johnson and Juliette Belhumeur; his step-daughter, Kathy Amyot and her husband Robert of Hastings, NE. and three step-grandchildren, William, Kate, and Emily Amyot.
Roger was a veteran of the United States Air Force. He enlisted with the Air Force in 1969 and was discharged in 1979. During his time with the Air Force, Roger obtained the rank of Staff Sergeant. Later, Roger dedicated his life to Firefighting and the Auburn Fire Department. He was first appointed as a firefighter in 1966. He became the first full time firefighter in Auburn when he was promoted to fire inspector in 1978. Roger was then appointed Lieutenant in 1982 and he became the first full time chief on January 1, 1987 and remained in that capacity until he retired in December of 2002. He remained involved in the Department as a scene photographer for many years. During his tenure, Roger established a working relationship with WPI that allowed students with fire service experience to man the West Auburn Station on West Street. He also served as the President of the Fire Prevention Association of Massachusetts. Roger was also a founding member of Massachusetts Fire District 7. This organization is comprised of 32 communities that provide mutual aid deployment for "fires, rescues, and hazardous material mitigation." Roger was very involved with many aspects of the town of Auburn. He was a town meeting member and a member of the Charter Review Committee. He served as the Town's Emergency Management Director until 2015. He was a member of the Kiwanis Club of Auburn, the Auburn Elks, the Tuttle Post American Legion, and the Auburn Rotary Club. Most recently Roger was the recipient of the John E. & Ethel E. Riley Outstanding Citizenship Award.
Since his retirement Roger could be found helping the people of Auburn at his son Matt's business, Bell's Lawn and Garden Center. Roger enjoyed golfing and participated in many leagues and tournaments throughout his life. Roger also loved fishing with his friends and grandchildren. Roger especially enjoyed spending time with his grandsons, Jacob and Brady, taking them on many road trips and adventures for Bell's Lawn and Garden. His granddaughter, Juliette, was one of the lights of his life.
The family would like to give heartfelt thanks to the nurses and staff of Dana Farber Cancer Institute, who took such amazing care of Roger from his first diagnosis in 1999 through his final weeks, especially Dr. Fisher, Michelle Walsh, and Melissa Houston, as well as the Roger the Dodger gang.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:00 am on Friday May 27, 2016 in North American Martyrs Church, 8 Wyoma Drive, Auburn, MA 01501. Burial will follow with full military honors at Hillside Cemetery, Auburn, MA. Calling hours will be held at the Britton-Wallace Funeral Home, 91 Central St., Auburn, MA 01502 on Thursday May 26, 2016 from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. Memorial donations may be sent to the Auburn Firefighters Relief Fund or to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Arrangements are under the care of the Newkirk-Palmer Funeral Home, 118 Main St., Canaan, CT 06018.
To plant trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store
Published by Worcester Telegram & Gazette from May 23 to May 24, 2016.