By Rev. Sue Murphy
Caption: L-R: Ruth Littlefield, James W. Jeannette, Patricia Eileen Fredette
Ruth Littlefield of Springvale passed away peacefully on November 22, 2023, with her family at her side at The Lodges in Springvale, Maine. Ruth was born on December 8, 1929, in Milo, Maine, and graduated from Kents Hill Prep School in Kents Hill, Maine. She then attended Nasson College where she first met Donald Littlefield. They were married on May 26, 1949 for 73 happy years. They both attended the University of Maine, where she graduated with two Bachelor of Science degrees: a BS in Economics and a BS in Education. Ruth loved teaching and helping kids. She taught grades 2-8, making great effort to find alternative ways to teach each child in their best learning style. Upon retiring after 20 years, she got her Real Estate license. Ruth was also an accomplished seamstress, an experienced knitter-crocheter, and crewel needle worker. She often was asked to judge competitions. Donald and Ruth operated a bi-centennial farm selling vegetables, raising their own beef, making their own yogurt cream and ice cream. Ruth was predeceased by her beloved husband Donald in January 2023, brothers Roland West of Vermont and Charles West of Virginia. Survivors include her daughter Beth Folsom and her husband John, four children and five grandchildren of Alfred; and her son Westley and wife Debbie Littlefield and two children of Springvale. A Memorial Service, followed by a reception, will be held Saturday, January 13 at 11:00 AM at the Bethel Christian Church in North Berwick, Maine. Read her full obituary at https://bibbersautumngreen.com.
James W. Jeannette 55, of Sanford, passed away at his home on December 5, 2023. Born in Biddeford to Harold and Maryann (Corrow) Jeannette, James brought joy and laughter into the lives of all who knew him. James had a zest for life and found immense joy in simple pleasures. He was an avid fisherman, a skilled card player, and had a passion for board games and movies. Christmas held a special place in James’s heart, as he eagerly anticipated the holiday season each year. His enthusiasm for Christmas was a reflection of his love for spending time with family and friends, creating festive traditions that will be fondly remembered. Throughout his working life, James discovered his true calling as a chef. James was predeceased by his father Harold J. Jeannette Sr., of Sanford; his devoted partner of 28 years, Maureen “Mo” Menter; and his great-granddaughter, Aurora Haskell, of Peterborough, NH. He is survived by his loving mother, Maryann Jeannette of Humboldt, Iowa; his brothers, Chris and Harold; Mo’s daughters, Shelly Williams of Kennebunkport and Laurie Menter of Portland and a large extended family. Private arrangements have been made to celebrate his life, in accordance with James’s wishes. The family appreciates the outpouring of support during this difficult time.
Read his full obituary here https://blackfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/james-jeannette.
Patricia Eileen Fredette 83 of Pearl Street, Sanford ME, died on Saturday morning, December 16, 2023 at the Gosnell Memorial Hospice House in Scarborough ME. She was born April 2nd, 1940 in Nyack, NY to James and Anne (Moran) Vavasour. She grew up in Schenectady and graduated from St. Columba’s High School in 1958. She then married her high school sweetheart and husband of 63 years Tom Fredette in 1960. Tom and Pat welcomed five children, Stephen, MaryPat, Joseph, Matthew and Noel into their family. Pat loved being a homemaker and had a passion for cooking, gardening and entertaining family and friends for holiday gatherings, parties and other special events. She especially loved decorating the house for the Christmas holiday season. Her kind spirit also led her to volunteer for hospice in Derry, NH for a time. More recently she enjoyed taking drives and exploring the Maine back roads with her husband. Feisty, protective, and generous, her family described her as a great lady. Most of all, Pat was happiest when surrounded by those she loved. She leaves behind a legacy of love, warmth, and resilience. She will be dearly missed by all who had the privilege of knowing her. Survivors include her beloved husband Thomas J. Fredette of Sanford, her children and their families. A memorial service for Patricia will be held at a later date. Read her full obituary at https://blackfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/patricia-fredette.
Caption: L to R: John Cochin Jr, Austin Gary Ham, Benjamin David English
John Cochin Jr., 87, beloved teacher, coach, lover of baseball, the arts and community public servant died on December 18, 2023 at home in Sanford. He was born on August 16, 1936, to John Cochin Sr. and Beatrice (Grenier) Cochin in Sanford, where he was a lifelong resident and a cherished asset to the community. At the age of 10, John’s passion for baseball was ignited by his neighbor, policeman Eugene Gerry, who taught him the game. This marked the beginning of a lifelong love affair with baseball, leading to his induction into the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame in 2009. John Cochin made significant contributions to Sanford, dedicating 48 years to teaching, coaching, and community service. He began his career as a Junior High science teacher, later becoming a long-time chemistry teacher at Sanford High School. John’s impact extended beyond the classroom, as he took on the role of head baseball coach in 1972, leading the team to a state title in 1978. He retired from his teaching career in 2008. This past summer, he had a baseball field and chemistry laboratory dedicated to him at Sanford High School. A loving father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, he will be deeply missed for his inspirational coaching, involvement in family events, and memorable vacations. John was an avid hiker and accomplished conquering all 48 peaks in New Hampshire and found solace in being outdoors. His three daughters Brenda, Lisa and Kristi and their families along with seven grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, a brother James Cochin and sister Joyce Cochin-Nelson Scally of Sanford survive him. A visitation was held on Friday, December 29, 2023 at Carll-Heald & Black Funeral Home. Read his full obituary at https://blackfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/john-cochin-jr
Austin Gary Ham, 28, of Sanford, died on Wednesday, December 20, 2023 at his home. He was born in Biddeford on October 11, 1995 to Jason R. Ham and Heidi L. Demers. He grew up in Sanford and graduated from Sanford High School. Austin learned to operate all types of machinery while working with his father, and he had several jobs over the years operating heavy equipment, most recently with J.A. Simpson, Inc. Austin would unwind with a ride on his motorcycle or by driving “junkers” through some mud. Austin loved everything about Chevy Trucks, owning and working on several, including some square bodies, the older the better. Additionally, he liked snowboarding and spending time with his dogs, Lexi and Levi and hanging out with his countless friends. Austin is predeceased by his fiancé, Desserrae Dutil, who also passed this year, as well as his maternal grandparents, Alan and Jackie Demers. He is survived by his parents, Jason and Heidi, his paternal grandparents, Gary and Nancy Ham of Sanford, and his cousins, Jodi, Abbi, Alan-Michael, Brooke, Micah, Kylar, and Kelty. A time to remember Austin will be held at the Carll, Heald and Black Funeral Home, 580 Main Street, Sanford on Friday January 5 from 4:00 to 7:00 pm. A time for shared memories will be at 5 pm. Read his full obituary at https://blackfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/austin-ham.
Benjamin David English, 19, of Sanford, died Sunday December 24, 2023 in an automobile accident. Ben was born in Sanford on August 13, 2004, the son of David and Heather (Dougherty) English. He grew up in Sanford and graduated from Sanford High School/ Sanford Regional Technical Center. He played soccer, baseball, wrestling, archery, and football throughout his youth and then settled on tennis once he reached high school. Ben participated in drama club, chess club, beginning guitar, and Magic Club. Once admitted to the Precision Manufacturing Program as a sophomore, Ben became involved in Skills USA, which included volunteering to help in the school concession stand. As a senior, Ben won the Gold Medal in the Maine state Precision Manufacturing Contest for Skills USA. He attended SMCC and had recently begun working at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard as an Outside Machinist. He preferred being outside whenever possible and looked forward to fishing trips with Captain Nick. He was known for being enthusiastic and energetic but could also be found sitting quietly and enjoying a book regardless of the commotion going on around him. Ben’s most memorable quality was his big heart and willingness to do anything for those around him. He is survived by his parents, Heather and David and his brother, Zachary and a large extended family. A gathering to remember Ben was held on Saturday December 30, 2023 at the Carll- Heald and Black Funeral Home. Read his full obituary at https://blackfuneralhomes.com/obituaries/benjamin-english.