David K. Bolton, 77, of New Haven


NEW HAVEN — David K. Bolton passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Nov. 8, 2023, after a long battle with cancer.

David was born David Dana Dexter Bradley on Feb. 12, 1946, in London, England, to Patricia Adams and American serviceman Dana Bradley. At three years David’s family traveled from England on the Queen Elizabeth II to settle in the Keene, N.H. area near his father’s family. David spent a couple of idyllic years there and remembered his time with his extended family very fondly. In 1951 the family moved to Fairhaven, Mass., where David spent the remainder of his childhood, graduating from Fairhaven High School. Patricia eventually remarried and David was adopted by his stepfather, Lester Bolton.

David met his future wife and soulmate, Mary, while attending Cape Cod Community College in 1966. Their relationship grew over their shared love of food, music and art. They married in 1968 and spent time on the Cape, in Provincetown, and in Boston as David attended Boston University and pursued his career in the kitchens of various area restaurant institutions such as Orson Welles, Joyce Chen’s, and The Colonial Inn. During this time Mary and David had their two sons, Aaron, and Gabriel.

In the early 1970’s, the family moved to Vermont, spending their first summer camped along Cota Brook on Lincoln Gap. Soon they purchased Snap’s Diner and opened their first restaurant together, naming it after David’s life partner — Mary’s Restaurant. David’s creativity, vision, and passion for food, plants, and art established Mary’s as a sought-after culinary experience, launching a regional food scene. David and Mary have always been grateful for all of the friends made and of the food community cultivated there.

David and family, including newly arrived daughter Mary Holley, returned to Cape Cod in 1979 for a time, only to return “home” to Vermont in 1987 settling on Marigold Farm in New Haven, where he would spend the rest of his days. Here David was able to indulge in what brought him joy, his gift for gardening, both flower and vegetable, and gathering with and feeding family and friends. Back in Vermont, David embarked on the second chapter of his culinary career at Lake Champlain Chocolates, where he spent 20 years as a Chocolatier creating the chocolates, candies and ice cream that were enjoyed by so many. David spent his final working years as an instructor and mentor for culinary arts students at The Hannaford Career Center, imparting his love and knowledge of food and cuisine to a new generation. He will be missed for many reasons, not the least being his generosity of spirit, his wry humor, and his room-filling smile.

David is survived by his wife, Mary (Shields) Bolton; son Aaron Bolton, his wife Marcie and their three children, Addison, Reubie and Annie; son Gabriel Bolton and his wife, Krissy and their two children Malin and Nora; daughter Mary Bolton-Orvis and her husband, Jake and their three children Grace, Henry and Marigold; and brother Christian Bolton and his wife, Kelly. David is also survived by dozens of nieces and nephews who all loved their uncle Dave. David was predeceased by his parents, Patricia Bolton and Dana Bradley; sister Karen (Bolton) Lefkowicz; and stepfather Lester Bolton.

The family wishes to thank the staff of the UVMMC Oncology Hematology dept., Janet Ely, PA-C, Jordan F. Tolstoy, PA-C, and especially Dr. Maura Barry. In lieu of flowers please consider making a donation in David’s memory to Addison County Home Health & Hospice, or, World Central Kitchen◊


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