Obituaries

Obituaries

Lorraine Alice Hamilton

      AMHERST –  Lorraine Alice Hamilton of Amherst, New Hampshire, Beach Haven, New Jersey and Rancho Mirage, California died June 14, 2020 from pancreatic cancer at her home in California.  She was 73 years old and a participant in the trial of a new cancer drug at NYU Langone in New York City since April 2019. She   hoped that results from the trial would improve care for other patients who develop this cancer. She was with her family when she died and was blessed to meet her newest

grandson Kurt, who was born on May 30, 2020.

      She is survived by her husband of 48 years Ward M. Hamilton,  son Ryan M. Hamilton and his wife Katie Hamilton and grandchildren Sylvie, Coralie and Kurt of Redondo Beach CA,  son Todd Hamilton and his wife Rosie Funk-Hamilton and grandson Luke of Seattle Washington and a Sister in Law Marcia Hamilton of Fort Myers Florida.

      Lorraine was born in Englewood, NJ and raised in Ridgefield, NJ. She was the daughter of Theodore and Bertha Michaelsen.  She attended Hartwick College in Oneonta, NY where she earned a BS in Sociology and Pasadena College in California where she earned her Nursing Degree.  She was a member of Gamma Phi Delta Sorority at Hartwick College   Her early career was in social casework for the Bergen County NJ Welfare Board, Emergency and Critical Care Nursing in California and New Jersey, School Nursing in Connecticut and New Hampshire as well as specialized nursing in New Hampshire before she retired. She was a Certified Mobile Intensive Care Unit Nurse in California.

      She was an active volunteer at Bishop Guertin High School in Nashua for many years helping with fundraising during her association for student scholarships.  She also served on the Bishop Guertin School Board for two terms in 2001-2007.  She and her husband joined a Medical Missions for Children Team for ten days in Ecuador in 2018 that completed surgeries for 80 children with cleft palates and other oral and facial deformities. She described her participation in the mission as one of her most rewarding experiences as a nurse and caregiver.  

      Lorraine was a skilled crafter who loved creating unique jewelry, and knitted pieces. She had many of her works on sale at boutiques in New Hampshire, California and New Jersey.  She loved the ocean having spent most summers in New Jersey on Long Beach Island at her summer home.  She enjoyed extensive travel around the world before her illness. She was a member of Sacred Heart Church in Palm Desert California.

      Visitation for family and friends will be held at Smith & Heald Funeral Home, 63 Elm Street in Milford, NH on June 22 between the hours of 1:00pm and 4:00pm and 6:00pm to 8:00pm.   A  Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on June 23, 2020 at Saint Patrick Church at 34 Amherst Street, Milford, NH at 11:00am .  A reception and lunch immediately following the Funeral Service at Labelle Winery, 345 NH Route 101 Amherst, NH is also planned.  All gatherings will adhere to social distancing recommendations in place. Masks are required at the Funeral Home and Church.  Burial is planned at the Riverside National Veterans Cemetery in Riverside, California at a later date. 

      Donations in her memory are sincerely appreciated to:  Bishop Guertin High School, Scholarships, 194 Lund Road, Nashua, NH 03060 or Medical Missions for Children, 100 Cummings Center, Suite 128g, Beverly, MA 01915.  Arrangements are in the care of Smith & Heald Funeral Home, 63 Elm Street, Milford.  To share a memory or offer a condolence, please go to www.smith-heald.com  

Donald Richard Haaker

Donald Richard Haaker, 80, born June 2, 1940, son of Carl E Haaker and Jeanne LaRochelle Haaker of Fitchburg, MA, son, brother, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, peacefully passed away on Sunday, June 7, 2020 at Saint Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, MA. 

       Don, as he was affectionately referred to by friends, and Dad or Grandpa by family, was a proud veteran, avid fisherman, former business owner, collector of “As Seen On TV” gadgets, and

the handiest handyman. A jack-of-all-trades, Don always had multiple projects underway because of his rich knowledge of carpentry, plumbing, automotive, and electrical.  There was no repair job or task too daunting for him and the complexity of the challenge was often expressed by a string of passionate expletives uttered under his breath as he worked.  He was always willing to come to the aid of family and friends.  Two of his coolest creations were a tree house on stilts and a sturdy well-loved custom swing set he built for his children.  

      He loved family holiday get-togethers and meals, especially his daughter Cheryl’s prime rib and Jennifer’s roasted turkey and stuffing as well as her chilled summer coconut cake.  He enjoyed making “Haaker snacks” with his son Bryan and daughter Erin.  Don often entertained others with his vivid and entertaining stories and tall tales.  He was known for his sharp wit and ingenuity.  

      Don was also an enthusiastic longtime ham radio operator - an interest that grew from his service days while he was stationed in Germany.  He enjoyed connecting with and mentoring a community of fellow amateur operators locally and across the world, engaging in two-way communications on many different waves and frequencies socially or in times of emergency.   A longtime member of the Barnstable Amateur Radio Club (BARC), he originally maintained the 147.045 MHz Dennis Repeater, which was known for having the best signal on the Cape.  

      A smart dresser, Don was also considered “easy on the eyes’’ by many and a “Casanova” of his time.  An admirer of women, he was always passionately engaged in the pursuit of romance.  

      Don was a persuasive and successful salesman as well as a somewhat infamous flea market haggler.  Most weekends Don could be found frequenting the market and ham radio fest circuit on the hunt for a great deal and excited about the possibility of turning a quick profit as a vendor.  He could be found at the end of these events scarfing up left behind items remarking, “If it’s free it’s for me” and would successfully turn around and sell those items the next week.   In the end, Don’s widespread and frequent use of liquid nails paired with the old adage, “It’s good enough for government work” ironically captures his unique philosophy in life to work hard, do your best, and not sweat the small stuff.   

      Predeceased by his first wife Barbara Richard Haaker and his second wife Caroline Peaslee Haaker, Don is survived by his four adult children Cheryl Gilmore of Marston Mills, MA, Jennifer Bertrand of Mont Vernon, NH, Bryan Haaker of Weare, NH, and Erin Haaker of Omak, WA, ten grandchildren and one great grandchild with another on the way.  Don is also survived by his younger brother, David C Haaker of Baldwinville, MA and predeceased by his older brother Carl Haaker Jr. (Jim).  

      A graveside service and military honors is scheduled for 12:45 PM, Thursday, July 2, 2020 at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, MA.  In Lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to the Barnstable Amateur Radio Club (BARC) at P.O. Box 322 South Dennis, MA 02660 in memory of Donald Haaker, W1CIA, formerly WA1AIC. 

  

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