Military Alumni

Military Alumni

Honoring Our Heroes

This area is dedicated to our alumni that have served or are serving in our armed forces!

Lost Class Rings

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In Memory Of
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Andris Arthur Ezis
Andris Arthur Ezis Class of 1961
Passed Feb 17, 2006
Andris A. Ezis, 63, died peacefully on Friday, (February 17, 2006) in Hartford Hospital, surrounded by his loving family and dear friends, following a brief illness. He was born in Skundra, Lativa on April 19, 1942 to Ernest and Lidija Ezis. Andy immigrated to America on his birthday in 1950 and settled in Willimantic with his family. He was employed by Pratt & Whitney Aircraft for over 28 years and recently retired from the Department of Corrections. He served his country in the Army as an M.P. stationed in Germany. Andy was an avid fisherman and he is leaving behind many fishing friends who will be proud to tend to his favorite fishing spots. Andy was known as the ``Kast Master'' and the ``Big One'' is now breathing easier. He always knew the exact number of days to the opening of fishing season. He will be sorely missed on the 3rd Saturday of each April. He leaves behind to celebrate his life, Olga, his beloved wife of over 37 years and his cherished daughters, Adrienne and Amy. Andy is also survived by his mother, his brother, Arnis, his nephew, Ernest and his niece, Leelinn. Also, celebrating his life is the Kurnyk family of Irene and Rene Goss; Rose, Steve, Kevin, Eric and Brian Dean; Kessenia, Gilles and Emilia Gagnon; Natalka, Michael, Cynthia and Shawn Paulhus; Myron, Janine, Margaret, and Olivia Kurnyk.
Beatrice E. Scott
Beatrice E. Scott Class of 1942
Passed Apr 20, 2012
Beatrice, my Godmother, died from metastatic breast cancer. Bea was a strong, independent woman, a great role model, with a strong work ethic. She never took a sick day from CL&P. Bea raised African violets, and owned a Smokey & the Bandit edition TransAM. I wear purple in your honor. PAX, Cathie Dainton Piacente
Brian Hallam
Brian Hallam Class of 1975
Passed Aug 23, 2001
Brian was my best friend unfortunately he passed away from a brain anurism while he was out takeing an afternoon walk. Very shocking and unexpected.
Brian was only 46 years old.Too young to be gone.
Sincerely
Mike Porter
Charlene Gorgone
Charlene Gorgone Class of 1975
Passed Sep 16, 2006
Rest in peace: Charlene Frances Gorgone, 48, of Willimantic, died Saturday, September 16, 2006 at Hartford Hospital. She was born December 30, 1957 in Willimantic, the daughter of Anne (Young) Gorgone of Willimantic and the late Francis Gorgone and had lived in Willimantic all her life. She was a 1975 graduate of Windham High School, and employed for the past 28 years at the University of Connecticut. She enjoyed motorcycle riding and spending time with her nieces and nephews. In addition to her mother she is survived by 3 siblings, Sharon Incandella and her husband Leonard of North Windham, Robert Gorgone of South Windham, Gary Gorgone and his wife Linda of Willimantic, her companion, Gordon Horton, many nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her sister Christine Gorgone.
Christine M. Gorgone
Christine M. Gorgone Class of 1978
Passed Oct 03, 2002
Rest in peace: Christine M. Gorgone, 42, of Willimantic, died Sunday November 3, 2002 at home. She was born April 23, 1960 in Willimantic, the daughter of Anne Gorgone of Willimantic and the late Francis Gorgone. In addition to her mother she is survived by 2 sons and a daughter-in-law, Bruce and Ivette Garrison of Willimantic, Jason Kiss of Dorchester, MA, 2 grandchildren, Christian Anthony Garrison and Jazelle Sole, 2 sisters and a brother-in-law, Charlene Gorgone of Windham, Sharon and Leonard Incandella of Windham, 2 brothers and a sister-in-law, Robert Gorgone of Windham and Gary and Linda Gorgone of Windham, her companion, James Parkin, several nieces and nephews. Her family will receive friends at the Potter Funeral Home, 456 Jackson St. Willimantic on Tuesday from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. There will be a gathering at the funeral home on Wednesday at 9:15 a.m. prior to the procession to her Funeral Mass at 10:00 a.m. at St. Joseph Church, Willimantic. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery.
David Alan Lewis Sr.
David Alan LEWIS Sr. Class of 1961
Passed Feb 19, 2011
LEWIS, David Alan, Sr. David Alan Lewis, Sr., 67, of Palatka, FL, passed away unexpectedly at his residence on Saturday (February 19, 2011). He was born in Willimantic, and had been a resident of Palatka for the last five years, coming from Colchester. David was a father and mentor to every person who was blessed enough to have him in their life. His infectious smile, fun-loving personality and humor will be missed by all. Some of his favorite hobbies were hunting, fishing and collecting coins. He enjoyed spending time with his children most. He was an entrepreneur who built many successful businesses including construction, insurance and restaurants. He was a member of many organizations including the Moose Lodge # 184 of Palatka as well as prior membership in Connecticut. He is preceded in death by his mother, Mary Lewis; and two brothers, Carlton Lewis and Douglas Lewis; and his former wife, Dorothy Fedus Lewis. Survivors include his father, Lt. Col. Eugene Hall Lewis, Sr., U.S. Army (Ret.) of Willimantic; three sons, David Alan Lewis, Jr. of Waterford, Darryl Lewis (Susanne Allen) of Colchester and Douglas Lloyd Lewis (Jennifer Riley) of Colchester; one daughter, Christina Leigh Lewis of Colchester; three brothers, Eugene Hall Lewis, Jr., Gregory Paul Lewis, and Robert Michael Lewis, all of Willimantic; three grandchildren, Connor Jacob Lewis, Christian David Charpentier, and Allie Mae Lewis; and his former wife, Sandy Lockhart Lewis of Colchester.
David Blackburn
David Blackburn Class of 1977
Passed Oct 27, 1986
OK..... October 27th, 1986..... I got the call around 4:00 am from Gail's older brother that David was killed in an auto accident on Rt 6 in Columbia, not too far from his church. My wife at that time, was working 3rd shift at Rockville General Hospital in Rockville, CT. I called her and asked her to come home. Next phone call, and I can still hear it, was to my parents who I waked up and had to get them a minute before they realized what I was saying. After that there was nothing but screaming and crying over the phone. The next few days blurred but I do remember going with Gail to Potter's Funeral Home in Willimantic to help her pick out a casket for my brother. The night of the wake was a nightmare. My parents were like zombies. They didn't know what they were doing, where they were or anything. When we walked into the room with the casket, they saw David and went almost hysterical, holding David's head and cradling him in their arms. The funeral director was horrified and told me what ever I do, get the, off the body. David sustained severe head and faial injuries and his face was mostly mortician's wax. He was afraid the work would come undo. Luckily, it held. After the funeral we went to the Willimantic Cemetery on Rt. 32 and David is buried in the family plot there. After the service my father dropped to his knees and was crying the he never told David he loved him. I'm sorry if this was a bit graphic but some things you never forget.
That brings us to Jack Schneider's Church. I do believe that is the church you mentioned where David came to the Lord. I went there for a very brief time as well. That church, and Jack Schneider himself, caused alot of hurt to my family .
I have to back up to the summer of 1986. I was laid off from my job as a firefighter at Pratt & Whitney Aircraft in East Hartford where David worked as well. I was attending Eastern Ct. State University in Willimantic but had alot of time on my hands. The church turned David and Gail away from my parents and I. We were sinners and he didn't associate with us. David, who was a calibrator for all the extremely sensitive instrumentation used in the production of a jet engine and was at labor grade 1, the top of the pay scale at P&WA, tithed 10% to the church faithfully. Many times this caused a financial hardship for David but the church came first. David would ask for money from my parents to pay his bills. If you weren't a christian, then you didn't exist. This caused alot of bad feelings between David and Gail and we never saw Gail and rarely saw the kids. This hurt my parents immeasurably. Anyway, in the winter of 83-84. Jack Schneider would always drive this beat-up VW bug to church. One cold day Jack drove in with a brand new Cadillac because the VW wouldn't start. David was livid! He felt betrayed as he gave up alot of things for the church. To see the pastor drive in in a new caddy was more than David could take. He really tapered off from participating in the church. That summer he and I re-connected as brothers when he asked my to help him put on a new roof on his house. What a blessing that was! I thank God that I got that month as I found my brother again. During this time David relayed just how much he was disappointed in not God, but the church. He never once faulted his belief in the Lord but instead the deception of man, especially Jack Schneider. It wasn't only the incident with the cadillac but he said other things made sense now that he "took off the rose-colored glasses".
After the accident of course my parents wanted to be with Gail and the kids. From out of no where the church people took over and they would NOT allow my parents to see Gail. She was always "sleeping" or some other excuse. How in the world can anyone justify keeping family apart at a time like this? My parents were in shock. At the funeral, Jack Schneider's entire sermon was about David and his grandmother. Not a word about my parents. Jack even had the nerve to ask my mother at the funeral if she ever gave herself to God. My mother was raised catholic and doesn't understand the concept of "born again". So my mother said no. Jack told her that she would never see David again if she didn't. What a completely insensitive thing to say to a mother who just lost her son. No religion would ever condone such behavior. As I said, the church caused a lot of hurt to my family.
Fredrick James Demarco
Fredrick James DeMarco Class of 1971
Passed Aug 08, 1997
Nick name Fred Artist Year Book Cover , Cross Country Runner, Gutarest, Has One Son Was Married once. Owner of ( New Birth Graffics Inc.)
Janice Lee Cushman
Janice Lee Cushman Class of 1969
Passed May 10, 2007
I Met Janice my first day of Freshman year. In Elementary School, at St Mary's in Willimantic, I was severely bullied and entered High School with a terrible self-esteem. Meeting Janice was the best thing to happen to me. Jan soon became my best friend and sister, eventually moving into my home with my Mom and brother. She became my sister-in-law, and together, Richard Dextraze and Janice Cushman made two beautiful children, Michael Dextraze, and Tracy Dextraze-Shaver. Janice was the BEST friend and mother. My brother and Jan split up and Janice remarried, having more wonderful children with her new spouse. I believe she lived a happy life in Colorado; but it was too short.

Janice passed away from breast cancer, on May 10, 2007.

I'm so sorry Janice isn't here to be a part of watching her children BE the people Janice hoped they would grow up to be. Janice, I know you're watching from Heaven, because if anyone deserves to be there, it's you. Everyone misses your loveliness, your kindness, your incredible presence. You ARE so missed.
John Franklin Reed
John Franklin Reed Class of 1961
Passed Sep 30, 2007
John ``Butchy'' Franklin Reed, Jr., 65 , resident of Hartford, died Sunday morning (September 30, 2007). He was born September 28, 1942 in Bronx, NY, to the late John F. Reed, Sr. and Anna Mae (Townsend) Reed. John graduated from Windham High School and served his country in Vietnam. John was employed by Heublein Inc. for over 20 years. He is survived by three children, John F. Reed, III (Los Angeles, CA), Jonathan T. Reed (Vernon), and Jasmine (Reed) Gibbs (Blandon, PA); three siblings Leonard Reed (Lebanon), Henry Reed (Columbia), and Lillie Mae Ruggs (Griffin, GA); three grandchildren, a host of nieces and nephews; and a special angel, Rev. Dorothy Vaught. He was predeceased by two sisters, Carolyn Wimms and Nancy Ligon.
Linda May Ochs
Linda May Ochs Class of 1963
Passed Oct 08, 2016
Momma is gone. She went to see Jesus, daddy and gramma last night. We 3 sisters and Lily (her newborn granddaughter) were by her side, holding her hand, singing, reminiscing and reunited. God guide us on this path to justice for all the wrongs that have been done. We love you always momma, RIP. Give everybody love from us. You are finally out of pain and safe with daddy for your eternal life. We will miss you for always and will continue to carry on our family legacy.
Marsha Jeanne Wilcox
Marsha Jeanne Wilcox Class of 1967
Passed Jan 09, 2016
(no additional information)
Michael G Porter
Michael G Porter Class of 1975
Passed Jul 07, 2011
Michael G. Porter, 55, of Vernon, CT died peacefully Thursday, July 7, 2011 at the VA Hospital in West Haven, CT. He was born in Willimantic on February 24, 1956. He is survived by his beloved wife Deanna (Caldwell) Porter and their three children, Lyssianne Maillet and her husband Paul and their children and his two sons, DeVaughn and Christian Porter and brother-in-law, Matthew and Leslie Caldwell and numerous cousins. Michael was predeceased by his infant daughter, Brittany Danielle. He was the son of the late Ann (Valone) Porter and George Porter. At the time of his passing he was a student at Lincoln College of New England Culinary management, a proud veteran of the United States Navy, and he was employed at Colts Firearms for many years. Friends call Michael a fun loving happy man. He will be sorely missed by his friends and family.
Richard Charles Lavecchia
Richard Charles LaVecchia Class of 1969
Passed Aug 12, 2017
LaVecchia, Richard Charles died Saturday, August 12, 2017 of brain cancer at the Connecticut Hospice in Branford. He was a resident of Killingworth and enjoyed summers at his lake house in Eastford. He leaves his wife of 43 years and high school sweetheart, Jean Mayshar LaVecchia; daughters, Lauren LaVecchia-Wik and Lynn LaVecchia; son-in-law Paul Wik, grandchildren, Madeleine Wik and Miles Wik. He also leaves his sister Joanne LaVecchia Kuhns, brother Louis LaVecchia, his brothers-in-law David Kuhns, Steven Kilberg and Andrew Mayshar, and his sisters-in-law Ellen Mayshar Kilberg and Nikki Labata Mayshar, along with his many nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents Louis LaVecchia and Jennie Parla LaVecchia.

Rich was born in Willimantic on April 1, 1951. Rich was a star athlete at Windham High and at Eastern Connecticut State University. He received his Master's Degree from Southern Connecticut State University. Rich, known lovingly to his students as "Mr. L," taught 6th grade science at Lyme Old Lyme Middle School for 40 years. He engaged his students with hands-on experiments and interactive lessons that inspired many to go on in the field or, at least, return to say "hi" and share a desk-drawer snack. Rich also coached Lyme Old Lyme High School Basketball for many years and was named Coach of the Year for the Shoreline Conference. He advanced in his coaching by taking on both his daughters Park & Rec teams. For him, his family always came first.

Rich retired in 2013 and enjoyed traveling with his family and friends. Anyone who knew Rich knew he was always up to something, whether that was playing a silly prank, building a dollhouse for his granddaughter, golfing with his friends or working in the yard. Everyone was impressed when Rich picked up a new hobby six years ago when he learned to play the guitar. It was something he had wanted to do since he was a child. Music is a big part of our family and we all loved singing along. We will miss his smile, kindness, patience and generosity. And we will never forget his love of chocolate, gummy bears and whipped cream.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. Vincent's Foundation/SWIM Across the Sound Center that provided wonderful services to Rich over the past year. 2800 Main Street, Bridgeport, CT, 06606, (203) 576-5451, https://give.stvincents.org/DonateNow.

Visitation Details



Wednesday, August 16th, 2017, 5:00pm - 7:00pm, Potter Funeral Home




Service Details

Thursday, August 17th, 2017, 11:00am, Windham Center Cemetery

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