Arnold Highfield, 79, Middlebury
MIDDLEBURY — Arnold R. Highfield, a resident of Middlebury, Vt., and St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, passed at the age of 79, on Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019, at the Porter Medical Center in Middlebury. At his side was his loving wife Shirley, and various members of their family.
Arnold was born in New Boston, Ohio, on March 10, 1940, to the late Arnold and Hazel (Nichols) Highfield of New Boston. Arnold was an author, scholar, businessman and poet. A graduate of the Ohio State University, he received his M.A. in Medieval History and a Ph.D. in Romance Linguistics. Arnold met his wife, Shirley de Chabert, of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, while both were undergraduates at Ohio State. Arnold and Shirley’s love for education, language and culture took them to Europe for some years before they settled back in St. Croix with their firstborn son, Kevin.
Arnold was a professor of Caribbean History and Linguistics at the University of the Virgin Islands as well as a visiting professor at Middlebury College in Vermont. Arnold and Shirley, along with their children, became part-time residents of Middlebury in the early eighties. Upon retirement, Middlebury became their permanent home. Arnold has lectured at universities around the world and authored forty publications on Caribbean History and Linguistics.
Arnold is survived by his wife Shirley de Chabert Highfield of St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands; his children Kevin Highfield, Leslie Highfield Carter, Kimberly Highfield and Christopher Highfield; his daughter-in-law Maria Constantinou Highfield; his son-in-law Richard Elliot Carter; his brother Terrance Highfield; sisters-in-law Luz Suarez de Highfield, Mildred de Chabert, Rita de Chabert Schuster, Saturnina Viera de Chabert; brother-in-law Ralph de Chabert, M.D.; his four grandchildren; along with many nephews, nieces, cousins and friends of the Highfield, Nichols and Cooper families of Ohio and the de Chabert, Schuster and Muckle families of St. Croix. He is predeceased by his brothers-in-law Austin de Chabert, Lowell Schuster and Mario de Chabert, and his nephew Dominique de Chabert.
The service will be held at Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (St. Mary’s) Church in Middlebury, Vt., on Oct. 12, at 10 a.m. Internment will immediately follow at the Middlebury Cemetery.
If desired, donations can be made in his name to The Student Sponsor Partnership, tinyurl.com/highfield-studentsponsor or a check to Student Sponsor Partner re: Arnold R. Highfield Memorial Fund, 424 Madison Ave. 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10017, or ARCH — The Estuary; endoflifevt.org/donate.
May he rest in Peace.◊
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