Obituaries

Thomas F. Bechtel, 83, of Middlebury

THOMAS F. BECHTEL

MIDDLEBURY — Tom Bechtel died suddenly on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020, at home in Middlebury, Vt., after several months of declining health. He is survived by Dorie, his wife of nearly 60 years, sons Stephen, Douglas, and Trevor and four grandchildren; Catriona and Annie Bechtel, Erik Powell-Bechtel, and Myrica Palm-Bechtel.
Tom was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1936 and grew up in East Aurora, N.Y., with his mother Mary, a school teacher, father Herbert, a Lake Erie fisherman, and sister Mary Joanne. Tom and Dorie met at Oberlin College in Ohio, and were married in 1961 after Tom finished two years in the armed services.
After receiving a master’s degree in Counseling from Harvard University, Tom started his career with positions at Northfield Mount Hermon Schools and Oberlin College until 1972. Tom and his family moved to Providence, R.I., where he was Dean of Undergraduate Counseling at Brown Univeristy for more than 25 years, retiring in 1999. Tom and Dorie retired to Cornwall, Vt., to be in the Middlebury area to enjoy the land and values of Vermont they both loved.
The family spent summers on Lakes Winnisquam and Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire. Tom loved sailing, fishing, canoeing, and hiking with the family. Tom was an avid reader of both U.S. and World History, with a particular interest in military and classical history.
Tom will be remembered by friends and family for his quick wit, intellectual curiosity, and genuine kindness. Tom and Dorie travelled to Scotland regularly to visit their son Trevor. They both fell in love with the landscape and the history of the ancient Gaelic culture.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Congregational Church in Middlebury, Vt., at 11 a.m., with reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to either the New Hampshire Audubon Society (Concord, N.H.) or the music program of the Middlebury Congregational Church.◊
 

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